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Beacon-News’ three things to know

04/17/2014, 9:54pm CDT
By Kevin McGavin

Kevin McGavin breaks down three pieces of news and notes from this week’s Aurora-area boys track and field action.

1. A track tradition. John Bell, boys track coach for almost three decades at West Aurora, is synonymous with Blackhawks track and field. The annual 12-team boys John Bell Invitational Saturday is always fiercely contested. Oswego is the only other local school in the field.

2. A league of his own. Batavia senior Ryan Wieties was in the zone at the Les Hodge Meet on Saturday, destroying the 800-meter field in 2 minutes, 2.36 seconds. But it was a day of experimentation for the Bulldogs’ distance ace, who captured the Upstate Eight Conference indoor 1,600 title last month. Geneva’s Blaine Bartel was the class of the field at 3,200 meters with his time of 10:33.27.

3. Rising Sun? The Western Sun Conference in its four-year existence was an extraordinary track and field league with multiple state champions. Yorkville coach Ben Draper said that Geneva boys coach Gale Gross is trying to resurrect the Western Sun with a special invitational. Geneva and Batavia joined the Upstate Eight when the league disbanded at the end of the 2009-10 school year. Yorkville, Kaneland and all the other members — with the exception of Glenbard South — were absorbed into the Northern Illinois Big 12.

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