Bulldogs enjoy seventh straight sectional crown
MATTOON – Mahomet-Seymour's seventh straight girls' track and field sectional title was just as impressive as the previous six.
Bonnie Moxley's Bulldogs again trounced the field at the Mattoon Sectional, scoring 154 points – nearly three times as many as runner-up Decatur MacArthur.
It made for a bunch of smiling and jovial Bulldogs afterward, each athlete holding up seven fingers for a team picture.
"I'm just happy," Moxley said. "It's all good."
The Bulldogs certainly were, sending eight individuals and all four relays to next weekend's state meet in Charleston. The top two finishers and anyone meeting a predetermined qualifying standard moved on.
No Bulldog was busier than Hanna Query, who anchored the victorious 400 relay, finished second in the 100, anchored the second-place 800 relay and captured the 200.
If she was tired, it didn't show. In the 200, her final race, she broke the school record with a 25.13-second clocking.
"The 200 is my favorite race," the Illinois State signee said. "I didn't think (about the record). I was just running to go to state and place as high as I could, and when that came along with it, it was just really exciting."
Moxley elected to pull Query and Morgan Holmes from the 400 in order to load up her 800 relay for the first time this season. It worked, as Holmes, Marya Esworthy, Katie Forshey and Query ran 1:47.88 to finish second.
The move also should give Query more rest during a busy weekend in Charleston.
"Adding a (400) in the middle of the (day) could jeopardize whether she would make it through the semis of the 200," Moxley said. "Strategically, we were thinking more about next weekend."
Hannah Schaap (1,600), Amanda Rodriguez (3,200), Tajia Cummins (triple jump) and Daniella Bunch (shot put) also claimed titles. Rodriguez's was the most surprising.
"Totally unexpected; a 40-second personal best," Moxley said. "Blew us all out of the water completely."
Bunch, who set a state record recently with a 51-foot effort in the shot put, joined teammate Addie Tennant and Centennial's Jordan Harris in the triumvirate's typically dominant performance in the throws.
Tennant was second in both events, while Harris won the discus at 138-10. Bunch's best in the shot put was a solid 49-4.
"Normally I wouldn't raise my expectations (following the 51-footer), but I think I have," Bunch said. "I know I can hit the 51, and now that I've done it, I expect to be in the 50s now. But 49 isn't too bad. I'll take that."
Third-place Danville will send Destiny Carter in the 100 (third in 12:42) and the 200 (second in 25.17, edged at the line by Query) and the 400 relay (second).
Urbana's McKenzie White finished second in both hurdles races. In the 300, she chopped nearly three seconds off her previous best.
"I think she shocked herself," Urbana coach Amy Boscolo said. "When she saw the time (47.65), she said, 'I did? Really? Oh, my good-ness.' "