Some of the best weather of the spring paved the way for two of nation's best to shine as Cahokia's Jamari Ward and O'Fallon's Patrick Perrier stole the show Saturday at the Winston Brown Track and Field Invitational at Edwardsville High School.
Entering the meet with a season-best triple jump of 50 feet, 2 1/2 inches at the Triad Indoor Meet in February, Ward posted the longest jump in the state at 50-6 to help lead the Comanches to the team title.
The defending Class 2A state champion in the long jump, Ward also won that event with a leap of 24-5 and was on a victorious Comanches 1,600-meter relay. Cahokia, which won both the frosh-soph and varsity 1,600 relays, finished with 135 points, 18 more than O'Fallon.
Like Ward, Perrier dominated his events to lead the way for his team. Perrier, a Stanford University recruit, won the 3,200 in 9 minutes, 24 seconds, 16 seconds faster than Triad senior Ben Richter (9:40).
Perrier later returned to win the 1,600 in 4:15. Wes Schoenthal, of Edwardsville, was a distant second in 4:26.
Also winning for O'Fallon was Dan Ryan, who took the discus with a throw of 166-6, and Spencer Phillips, who ran a 1:57.1 to claim the 800.
Belleville West, getting a strong effort in the relays, was third in the team competition with 101 points. (Chiago Heights) Bloom Township (75 points) and Plainfield North (67) rounded out the top five teams.
Other local individual winners included Collinsville's Martinus Mitchell (shot put 57-10), Triad's Adam Nelson (100, 11.21) and Madison junior Andre McGill (200, 22.4).
Edwardsville quartet runs at Penn Relays
Invited to compete at the famed Penn Relays in Philadelphia this weekend, the Edwardville Tigers placed fourth in the large school division of the 400 relay. The team of Brian Crowe, Isaiah Michl, Fontez Davis and Craig James finished with a time of 42.54.
DeMatha Catholic from Hyattsville, Md. won in 42.04.
The same quartet also competed in 1,600 relay, finishing 10th in their heat with a 3:28.55.