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Smith doubles up in distance races at state

Ryan Clevenger, Tony Zea, 4x800 relay finish strong for Downers Grove North

CHARLESTON - Zack Smith's dream was to pull of the distance double at the IHSA state track meet.

And on Saturday in his final high school meet, the Downers Grove North senior did just that.

Smith notched all-state honors with a sixth-place showing in the 3,200-meter run after crossing the line with a time of 9:19.75, and then he backed that up with a ninth-place finish in the 1,600 with a mark of 4:14.82.

"It was an awesome weekend," said Smith, who also had to run the mile in the prelims on Friday to make it to the finals. "I can't be disappointed [in my finishes], I gave it my all."

He will continue his running career at the University of Illinois.

"I'm really excited," he said. "We have a great class coming in and a great coach. I'm very excited to get down there and start training with them."

Teammate Ryan Clevenger also competed in the 1,600 and came in third in 4:11.20. On Friday in the prelims, the junior advanced with the 11th-best time.

"I knew that I could do better than that," Clevenger said. "I knew I could finish strong and do what I needed to go to get up there."

In the 800, Tony Zea came in fourth in 1:54.44.

"I was happy with the race," Zea said. "At the beginning of the season, I was just hoping to qualify for state, so getting fourth place is an incredible feeling. It's one of the best moments in my life.

"And I have a great team which pushes me every single day. I wouldn't be here without my teammates."

Zea was also a part of the 4x800 relay, along with Jack Diamond, Zac Christensen and Clevenger, which finished eighth in 7:47.95.

"We are extremely satisfied," Diamond said. "It was a very fast race. Last year it was not nearly as fast as this year. We've improved almost four seconds from sectionals and one second from the prelims, so it was a good race all around."

Eric Wisz was 10th in the pole vault and Jeremy Craven added a 12th place finish in the 3,200.

As a team, the Trojans finished in a tie for 12th place with 20 points.

Jazz Charrier jumped 21 feet, 5 inches in the prelims of the long jump, Nick Steichmann recorded a mark of 48-9.75 in the shot put and Nick Janicki threw 150-6 in the discus prelims.

Downers Grove South

Jacob Amiri ran in the prelims of the 800-meter run at the Class meet, clocking a time of 1:58.91.

The 4x400 relay team of Amiri, Adam Gray, Ross Netzel and Jon Osei ran a 3:25.75 in the prelims.

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