ELGIN – Amanda Passaglia itches to come untracked whenever she steps into the discus and shot put circle.
“It’s an individual sport, so I’m relying only on myself,” Passaglia said. “It’s just really cool to see how far I can throw.”
On Thursday, only inclement weather prevented the St. Charles East senior and her fellow Upstate Eight Conference girls track and field athletes from testing their limits. The conference meet at Elgin’s Memorial Field was postponed until 4:30 p.m. today after a series of lightning delays and rain finally forced officials’ hands.
East’s quartet of Krista Fitzmaurice, Torree Scull, Corrin Adams and Anastasia Honea won the 4x800-meter relay between stoppages.
“It was going to be a long night as it was, and the girls were prepared for that, as far as coming back [today],” Saints coach Tim Wolf said. “It makes for a long two days, but I guess if you look at it, it’s good preparation for staying downstate. Because you’ve got to get ready for two days of racing, anyway.”
It seemed farfetched a few years ago, but Passaglia would embrace the chance to compete at the Class 3A state meet in Charleston in two weeks.
Initially an outside hitter in the East volleyball program, Passaglia joined track and field as a sophomore to build strength and conditioning.
She wound up gaining a passion, too.
“I just had natural talent,” said Passaglia, who recently committed to throw at Gardner-Webb in North Carolina, “and I started to love the sport.”
Competing at last week’s Kane County Meet at Geneva, Passaglia established a personal record by about nine feet when she won the discus with a throw of 125 feet, 11 inches.
She set a PR in the shot put in March, registering a 38-6 to win the UEC River indoor title. Both her individual bests exceed 3A state qualifying standards.
“She’s been training hard, been getting super strong and it’s showing in her meets and her distances,” Wolf said.
That might be because Passaglia is dialed in. She’s hoping she hasn’t peaked yet.