ALTON – Three wins, two records. It seemed like another day at the office Thursday for talented Alton High trackster LaJarvia Brown.
“It was a great day, the best I’ve ever had here,” the junior said after delivering a showy performance in the 19th annual Alton Girls Invitational at Public School Stadium.
She won the long jump with a meet-record leap of 18 feet, 8 inches. Brown also finished first in the triple jump by going a meet-record 40-3.5. Then Brown outran the competition by winning the 300-meter low hurdles in 44.63 seconds. The Redbirds finished fifth in the team standings with 95 points.
“LaJarvia was consistent in all three events, just like she has been all season,” AHS coach Terry Mitchell said. Brown also anchored the Birds’ 4x100-meter relay, fourth in 50.53.
Mitchell added, “This is her first year running the low hurdles, but I’m not surprised she is doing so well in them. Before the season began, it was between running the (100-meter) high hurdles or the lows and we went with the low hurdles.”
What made Brown’s outing so special this time is that it came in front of a home crowd surveying the action on and around Wigger Track.
“I love being able to compete at home,” Brown said of the Redbirds’ only home meet this season. “I’ve been here so much that I know everything about this track.
“I could compete in the triple jump with my eyes closed.”
O’Fallon’s Panthers opened some eyes with their effort in the eight-team invite. They scored 186 points to easily snare the team title. Cahokia, getting an eye-popping presentation from Mariya Hudson, scored 115.5 points to share second-place with East St. Louis.
Hudson won the 100-meters (12.12), the 200-meters (24.87) and the 400-meters (56.03). In addition, Hudson leaped 18-6 in the long jump to place second to Brown. Cahokia is the defending Class 2A state champion and a threat to repeat in next month’s three-class state finals at Charleston.
Katie Mans and Jewel Wagner of the Redbirds complemented Brown’s work. Mans, a freshman, won the high jump by going 5-2. Wagner heaved the shot 39-10.5, good for third place. She established a school record, eclipsing Dedre Jackson’s previous AHS best throw of 39-6 in 1986.
“That was our oldest school record,” Mitchell said. “Jewel is really coming around and Katie Mans continues to improve.”
Wagner, a junior, said: “I think I’m getting better each week. I wanted to break the school record. My goal is to go to state and place.”
Mans, who also ran on three relays, likes the way she’s progressing. “Things are going great and it’s nice to win at home,” she said.
Taylor Carpenter of AHS took third in the 100-meter hurdles at 15.22 and the Redbirds placed fourth in the 4x200-meter relay (1:49.79) and the 4x400-meter relay (4:21.42).
Edwardsville finished fourth with 104 points, followed by Alton. Triad (91.5 points), Granite City (40) and Carrollton (13.5) rounded out the team scoring.
Katherine Jakich paced the Warriors by finishing third in the discus (118-7). She also was seventh in the shot (35-8). Teammate Kori Nesbit was fourth in the 1,600-meters (5:30.31). Fonda Clark came in fifth in the long jump (15-4).
“This meet is a tough meet, but it’s a good meet for us,” Warriors’ coach Becky Cook said. “It’s the first time we’ve competed against East St. Louis this season.”
Cook said Jakich is stoking the Warriors. “She is leading us in points with her throws in the discus and shot,” the coach noted.
She pointed out, “We’re building things and I think our long-distance program is the best it has been in my six years as head coach. We’re excited about this season.”
Alton, Edwardsville, Granite City and Triad will join Collinsville and Highland on Tuesday in the large-school portion of the Madison County meet in Collinsville. It will feature boys and girls competition. Small-school boys and girls action is set for Monday at East Alton-Wood River High's Memorial Stadium.
O’Fallon 186, Cahokia 115.5, East St. Louis 115.5, Edwardsville 104, Alton 95, Triad 91.5. Granite City 40, Carrollton 13.5
800 Medley – Edwardsville, 1:54.46; 4x800-meter relay – O’Fallon, 10:08.59; 4x100-meter relay – O’Fallon, 48:00; 3,200-meters – Tidwell, O’Fallon, 11:46.87; 100-meter hurdles – Harris, Edwardsville, 14.80; 100-meters – Hudson, Cahokia, 12.12; 800-meters – Clinton, O’Fallon, 2:22.94; 4x200-meter relay – O’Fallon, 1:43.01; 400-meters – Hudson, Cahokia, 56.03; 300-meter low hurdles – Brown, Alton, 44.63; 1,600-meters – Cardenas, O’Fallon, 5:18.34; (Sets meet record. Old mark was 5:20.3 by K. Busch, Freeburg, 2010); 200-meters – Hudson, Cahokia, 24.87; 4x400-meter frosh-soph relay – East St. Louis, 4:15.59; (Sets meet record. Old mark was 4:16.63 by East St. Louis), 2011; 4x400-meter varsity relay –O’Fallon, 4:01.28; Long Jump – Brown, Alton, 18-8; (Sets meet record. Old mark was 18-4.5 by Fowler, Cahokia, 2000); High Jump – Mans, Alton, 5-2; Shot Put – Richter, Triad, 40-10.5; Discus – Herron, East St. Louis, 127-7; Pole Vault – Buck, Triad, 12-0; (Sets meet record. Old mark was 11-0 by Buck, Triad, 2014 and Faulkner, Edwardsville, 2010); Triple Jump – Brown, Alton, 40-3.5 (Sets meet record. Old mark was 38-8 by Brown, Alton, 2014).