By PAUL HINES firstname.lastname@example.org
---- — MT. VERNON – The Rams track team raced to victory Tuesday night.
The win was Mt. Vernon’s third straight in the Ram Relays. Mt. Vernon finished with 183 points.
“(It was) just a team effort,” Mt. Vernon coach Clint Turner said.
With freshman/sophomore races counting toward the team score in Tuesday’s meet, Turner said depth was a key.
“We used every single person on the team in some form or fashion to cover everything, and that’s the tough thing about this meet because you have to cover both races,” Turner said.
Other team scores were: Salem 122, Marion 110, Centralia 108, Carbondale 91 and Herrin 83.
Mt. Vernon won eight of the 23 events. Second-place Salem dominated the field portion of the competition with four wins while the Rams strength came on the track.
Jordan Wilemon won the open 3,200 meters in a time of 10:27.28.
“It’s hard to run good times all by yourself,” Turner said. “And unfortunately we like the heat, but those distance runners don’t really like it.
“He ran a decent first mile and got away from everybody so he just cruised through.”
Other wins for the Rams were: the 3,200 varsity relay team (8:06.29); the 3,200 meter freshman/sophomore relay team (8:49.24); the 400 meter freshman/sophomore relay team (46.19 seconds); the 800 meter relay team (1:33.84); the varsity distance medley relay team (11:26.96); the distance medley freshman/sophomore relay team (12:03.83) and the 1,600 meter varsity relay team (3:29.46).
Turner said the team had some trouble passing the baton in the sprint relays, and it cost them victories Tuesday. The Rams won the 800 meter relay but placed second in the 400 meter relay.
“It’s all about exchanges, being able to pass the baton,” Turner said. “And we passed the baton really well Friday night (in Marion).
“We got a little giddy tonight. We got out a little early on some exchanges.”
Mt. Vernon travels to Collinsville on Saturday.