May 7, 2016

10 intense looks from the '12 girls state track meet

There are more than a dozen or so links, likely made by couch potatoes, talentless wannabee athletes and fans, all never amounting to anything more than just average in the sport of their choice, routinely make fun of the expressions captured on camera by high-level athletes. It's that look caught at just right moment on camera when those of us summon that extra bit of physical power needed to move faster, pound out one more rep or take that next painstaking stride closer to the finish line.

State champion Erica Dynes at state track
Wethersfield's Erica Dynes flies to the finish line in the Class A 100-m dash on Saturday. Dynes, a senior and four-time state qualifier, won the 2012 title clocking a 12.10 in her final race of her prep career.

Olympians and professional athletes do it. College players do it. Anyone competing at an elite level will have their facial expression undergo X-Men like metamorphosis to something uncanny when the difference between winning and losing is that one extra ounce of strength, that burst of energy to victory. When the intensity of the moment calls for it, serious athletes who push their bodies and mental abilities to their limits routinely make "The FACE".

"The FACE" isn't something to laugh about, but a moment to be admired because it usually happens only when an athlete is performing outside of their comfort zone somewhere way above 120%. Here's a look at nine other athletes from the 2012 state track & field meet in Charleston, who gave their all in pursuit of a high school state title.

Pole vault specialist Loren Brooks
St. Joseph-Ogden's Loren Brooks tries to clear the bar in the Class 1A pole vault. The sophomore vaulter failed to make the finals with her best attempt clearing 8 feet-6 inches on Thursday.

SJO's Rachel Ballard
Pulling ahead of CICS/Longwood's Briyanna Desrosiers and Sesser-Valier's Chelsea Miller, St. Joseph-Ogden senior Rachel Ballard runs to a second place finish in her heat of the Class 1A 100-m dash. Ballard qualified for Saturday's finals with a time of 12.62. When the dust settled from the weekend, Ballard placed 3rd in the 200-m Dash, 4th in the 100-m Dash, won the triple jump title and finished 6th in the long jump. Her efforts helped the Spartans finish third in the overall team standings with 46 points.

Kewanee Wethersfield's Karissa Roman takes the baton running anchor in the Class 1A preliminary heat for the 4x400 relay. Roman and her squad came up short in their attempt to reach the finals with their time of 4:08.32.

Romeoville High School's Latasha Fizer runs her leg of the Class 2A 4x200 relay at the 2012 IHSA state track & field meet. Thanks to her effort, her squad advanced to the finals with a time of 1:42.71 and clocked a 1:42.32 on day later to take 5th at state.

Woodstock Marian's Danielle Flynn throws the shot in the Class 2A shot put at the 2012 IHSA state track & field meet. The freshman's best throw of 33 feet-3 inches was a little more than four feet short of what she need to make the finals on Saturday.

Kankakee Senior High School's Tyjuana Eason competes in the Class 2A 4x200 relay at the IHSA state track & field prelims on Friday. She and her squad advanced to the finals clocking a 1:44.35 time around the track.

Moweaqua's Kaitlyn Corzine, Wethersfield's Sara Fisher and Monticello's Olivia Ness
Moweaqua's Kaitlyn Corzine clears the row of hurdles ahead of Wethersfield's Sara Fisher on her left and Monticello's Olivia Ness on her right while running in the Class 1A 100-m hurdles prelims on Thursday. Corzine, who won the heat, qualified for the finals with a time 15.68. On Saturday, she earned four state medals including 4th in 4x400 relay, 5th in the 300-m hurdles and a pair of 7th place awards in the 4x100 relay and 7th in 100-m hurdles

Rockets' Bailey Reifsteck
With a look of serenity on her face, Unity's Bailey Reifsteck concentrates on her next vault during Saturday's finals at the 2012 IHSA state track & field meet. After snapping her pole on her previous attempt at the bar, she went on to finish in 8th place with her best attempt at 10 feet-3 inches.

Huntley track star Anthonia Moore
Huntley junior Anthonia Moore crosses the finish line in the 400m dash on Friday at the 2012 IHSA state track & field meet. She advanced to Saturday title run with a time of 56.57 where she went on to finish in 8th place.

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