Harlem runners come close at State

By Matt Nestor
Sports Columnist

Looking to add an outdoor state title to her indoor state title in the 55-meter hurdles, Harlem senior Jenna Combs had two chances, competing in the 100 hurdles and the 300 hurdles at the IHSA Class 3A state championships on the campus of Eastern Illinois University.

The Huskies’ top runner was close in both events, but came up short in her bid for another state title this season.

Combs finished fourth in the 100 hurdles, coming in with a time of 14.80 seconds. Then she came within a half-second of winning in the 300 hurdles, finishing second with a time of 43.75.

Harlem’s other runner at state, sophomore Leah Raffety, also finished off a strong season well. She made it through the preliminary round into the finals, where she finished 27th in the 3200 run with a time of 11:39.67.

Two other NIC-10 athletes placed in the state finals in class 3A. Hononegah senior Caitlin McLaughlin finished 11th in the discus throw at 114-08, while Boylan senior Erin Didier finished 6th in the shot put at 40-1.25.

In the class 2A state championships, a force to be reckoned with has emerged for the next few years in East freshman Logan Tillmon. Much like Combs, Tillmon was competing in two events at the state meet.

Tillmon performed well, finishing seventh in the 200 meter dash at 25.28 and fifth in the 100 hurdles at 15.06.

Belvidere North also sent two runners into the finals of events. Junior Kristen Levi finished 18th in the 3200 run at 11:45.77, while junior Baily Murphy finished 7th in the 300 hurdles at 46.28.

From the May 26-June 1, 2010 issue

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