ST. JOSEPH — Bismarck-Henning senior Mary Bass and Oakwood/Armstrong-Potomac senior Hailey Bennett are closing out the high school athletic careers in style.
Both Bass and Bennett achieved major accomplishments at Friday’s IHSA Class 1A St. Joseph-Ogden Sectional on a bitterly cold night in eastern Illinois.
For Bass, she not only won both the 100 and 200-meter races, but those victories give her four straight state meet appearances in both events and including middle-school athletics, she has made the state meet in all eight years of track.
“Every year that I’ve done track, I’ve gone to state,’’ said Bass, noting that its been six straight years in both the 100 and 200. “There is kind of a lot of pressure on yourself to keep making it. Because if you don’t, you have killed the tradition.
“I know that it doesn’t happen often, so it’s really cool that I’ve been able to do this.’’
Bennett, who will be making her third straight trip to Charleston, qualified in all four events on Friday night. She was second in both the 100 and 300 hurdle races, while also running the leadoff leg on the Comets winning 400 and 800 relay teams.
“This has been my goal since starting high school track, especially getting to state in the 100 hurdles,’’ she said. “I always wanted to make it to state in that event.’’
That’s because it was Bennett’s event when she was in middle school.
“I was terrible back then,’’ she said. “I went to state in the high jump and when I saw those girls in that event, I never thought I would make it.’’
Oakwood/Armstrong-Potomac coach Lynn Anderson didn’t know on Friday night the last time that the Comets had a female athlete reach the state finals in four events and they will be taking both their 400 and 800 relay teams to state this year, after having just the 800 team make it a year ago.