GRANITE CITY – The Alton boys’ track team performed well in finishing in a sixth-place tie with Edwardsville at the Granite City Invitational meet Friday afternoon and evening at Memorial Stadium/Kevin Greene Field.

The Redbirds had big performances from Deonte Rogers in the sprint races, winning the 100 meters at 10.90 seconds while finishing second in the 200 meters with a time of 22.65 seconds.

“We were really happy with Deonte running the 100 and the 200,” Alton head coach Jeff White said. “He’s looking really good for us, and we’re really happy with how he’s doing. He’s really kind of come into his own this year in the sprints, and training is really paying off for him.”

Combined with a second place performance in last week’s Norm Armstrong Invitational meet in Belleville, and McGoy is starting to become one of the state’s top sprinters.

“Yeah, I think he proved last week at Belleville West that he’s one of the top 100-meter sprinters in Class 3A,” White said. “And so it’s nice to be able to coach a kid with that speed.”

White also singled out rookie runner Joe Morrissey, who wound up third in the 300-meter hurdles with a time of 40.95 seconds, a very good time for someone who’s never run track before this year.

“That was a good time for him to be having,” White said. “We know that time’s going to keep dropping, and we think he can be someone who gets to state. Which is tremendous, because this is his first year doing track; he’s a senior rookie.”

The veteran runners welcomed Morrissey with open arms, and have been instrumental in helping his improvement. The team concept is also a vital part of the Redbirds success.

“Yeah, absolutely,” White said. “They’re excited to see what Joe had to offer when we started practice, and they saw his talents. You know, he’s fit right in, and he’s got a great personality, and he’s part of our team.”

The Redbirds continue to use the meets as a countdown to the stretch run in May when the state series takes place. White feels that his team will be ready to go.

“We know that we’re going to be riding by the time May comes,” White said. “You know, we’ve kind of played around a little bit with some of the events, just seeing how kids react different ways, and just trying to really kind of focus. We really don’t do a meet too seriously in April. We want May to really be our focus, so right now, we’re using some of these meets in April to really kind of figure out where we can best use our guys at so that they’ll perform well next month.”

In other results, Cassius Havis wound up second in the 400 meters with a time of 52.17 seconds, the 4x800-meter relay team of Gerard Bruce, Issak Evans, Havis, and Jaylon Harrison were fifth at 8:31.13, and the 4x400-meter relay team of Tim Johnson, Havis, Dasani Stewart, and Morrissey wound up fifth at 3:32.70.

In the field events, Ju’Qui Womack was seventh in the long jump, going 19’ 10”, and was fifth in the triple jump with a leap of 40’ 6.5”.

Dan Brannan also contributed to this story

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