The members of the Litchfield Middle School track team ended their season on a high note as two Panther Cubs brought home medals from the 2019 IESA Class 2A State Track Meet.
Seventh graders Ayvin Bunton and Kendall Stewart both placed in the top eight in their events to add to the history of success that the LMS track program has had at state.
Bunton would race twice individually at the state meet, held at the Eastside Centre in East Peoria on May 17-18. His medal would come in the 800 meters, where he ran a 2:14.00 to finish fifth overall out of 38 runners. Bunton would also run well in the 1600, placing 15th with a time of 5:11.02.
Stewart's medal would come in the 400 meters after running a 1:02.14. That time would be good enough to take eighth overall in the 27-participant field.
In addition to the medalists, Litchfield would have four other entries in the seventh grade side of the meet.
For the boys, Tug Schwab would finish 21st in the shot put with a toss of 32'6", while the 4x400 team of Tate Dobrinich, Martavious Jones, Ayvin Bunton and Cam Quarton finished 26th with a time of 4:20.69, with Kennan Powell serving as the alternate.
On the seventh grade girls' side, Annika Rhodes was 26th in the discus with a throw of 68'3", while Sofia Ray was 34th in the 100 meters with a time of 16.65.
In the eighth grade girls division, Morgan Lemon narrowly missed out on giving the Panthers another medal, but finished in the top 20 in all three events in which she competed.
Lemon's best finish was in the 400 meters, where she ran a stellar 1:01.07 to finish ninth overall, one spot away from the podium. Lemon, who was fourth in the hurdles at state as a seventh grader, would also compete in the 100 meter hurdles and narrowly missed the finals, running a 16.92 to finish 12th in the preliminaries, just .43 seconds from the eighth and final spot in the finals. Both times were an improvement over her times in the sectional.
Lemon also finished 17th in the long jump, popping a leap of 15'7.25" to earn her third top 20.
Like his classmate, Paul Cowgill also upped his game for the state tournament. After clearing 9'3" at the sectional (and missing at 9'9"), Cowgill cleared 10'0" to finish 11th at the meet and set a new personal best.
The trip to state capped off another successful season for the Panther Cubs, who have picked up at least one medal in each of the last three IESA State Track Meets.