Joliet West’s Marcellus Mines among big winners at Lincoln-Way West invite – Shaw Local


LENOX – The big winners in Monday’s Warrior Invitational at Lincoln-Way West had the unusual luxury of easing off down the stretch.

Marcellus Mines of Joliet West, for instance. Already the top- athlete in Illinois in both the 800 and 1,600, Mines ran the metric mile in a cool 4:21.5, 5.4 seconds ahead of the rest of the and some nine seconds off his best time.

The last 80 yards, he slowed to a canter and still Sean Hanrahan of Lincoln-Way East and Kyle Friedl of Lincoln-Way Central, hard as they tied for second in 4:26.9, were nowhere near catching him.

“I was looking back a little bit, just making sure I got the points for the team,” said Mines, who explained he took it easy down the stretch because of a sore stomach. “As as I trust in God, I put in the work.”

A senior who has largely been coached in technique by his father Michael since eighth grade, Mines runs with an economy of movement. He appears to be going slower than he is.

“I’ve been doing it alone my whole life,” Mines said. “My dad would take out in the morning, crack of dawn and I’d be crying, but he still pushed .”

Then there was Lincoln-Way East’s Jacob Pinkston. The senior breezed to in the 800 – in which Mines was not entered – in 2:01.5, off his personal best of 1:59.22. Teammate Drew Arnold was second in 2:02.9, far enough back that Pinkston couldn’t hear his footsteps and looked back with 50 meters remaining to see just where Arnold and those who trailed him were.

“I didn’t go that hard, but it was a good ,” said Pinkston, who added he had to “eat healthy” for three extra days because of Friday’s rainout. “Usually on the weekends I eat a lot.”

Joliet West’s James Kokuro Jr. made a big splash in the 400, winning in 50.3 seconds, a personal best and the state’s 24th-best time this spring. In contrast to Mines and Pinkston, he had to work hard every step, beating Lincoln-Way Central’s Vince Demma to the line by nine-tenths of a second. Kokuro wanted to ease off on the backstretch but the competition was too tough.

“I wanted to cool it down on the back straight, power into the turn and finish strong,” Kokuro said. “The time wasn’t what I expected it to be but I’ve still got conference and sectionals to go sub-50.”

Jayden Jurkowski of Joliet West had the outstanding performance, a throw of 137 feet 5 inches in the discus, which outdistanced Lincoln-Way East frreshmen Mason Halliman (131-1) by more than six feet. Ryan Stiglic of Lincoln-Way West pole-vaulted 14-8 to win that discipline by two feet.

Lincoln-Way East ran to an easy victory in the team competition with 217 points to Lincoln-Way West’s 152. Joliet West was third with 140 points. But the major object of this meet, rescheduled from Friday because of rain, was as a litmus test for May’s major meets: the conference, sectional and state championship tests.

In that regard, Pinkston threw down the gauntlet when it comes to the SouthWest Suburban Conference meet at Homewood-Flossmoor on May 8.

“We’re gonna win it,” Pinkston said. “We’re going to beat H-F. That’s our goal. I think we’ve got enough talent to beat ‘em. “



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