Lady Leafs' seniors nab final home wins

Chris Steele
Abby Reakes leans to clear the bar during the high jump competition at the Geneseo Invitational at Bob Reade Field.

The Lady Leafs’ senior duo of Erika Furbeck and Rebekah Beard powered the Geneseo 4x400-meter relay team to a victory in the final event of the Geneseo Invitational.

The duo had to a bit of a gap to make up after Sterling powered to a lead in the first two legs.

However, Beard made up enough ground that it seemed all over the moment Furbeck got the baton.

“It felt really good on Senior Night for us with two seniors anchoring it,” Beard said. “On the track, it felt good to get that last win knowing how close the team scores were.”

The Leafs’ Julia Poel, Alison Bowers, Beard and Furbeck won the meets final even in 4:10.85.

It was a fun night for Furbeck who won the long jump with a distance of 18’10.75”.

This was Furbeck’s first time competing in the long jump at the Geneseo Invite since in the past the invite fell next to bigger invites on the calendar.

“It was fun with the new facilities to come out here and test them out,” Furbeck said. “ I see wonderful things coming in the future for our school.”

Beard finished runner-up in the triple jump with a distance of 33’, and Furbeck added a victory in the 100 in 12.55.

Another senior making the most of Senior Night was Reece Bodeen.

Bodeen won the 100 hurdles with a time of 17.06, and Isabel Sierra finished 10th in the 100 dash in 14.92.

Tori Verbeck won the 300 hurdles title in 47.74, placed fourth in the shot put with a throw of 33’ and she finished fifth in the 100 in 13.67.

Verbeck has competed in track at the AAU level, but this is her first season with the Lady Leafs’ track team.

A junior, Verbeck is focused on being a multi-event track athlete in college, and she is relishing the time she gets to work with Iowa State grad Kaci Storm.

In her first year as an assistant coach, Storm competed in the heptathlon in college and Verbeck loves having her knowledge on her side.

“When I was little I always looked up to her,” Verbeck said. “It’s kind of like a dream come true to have your idol be able to coach you and help you.”

Geneseo’s Abby Reakes finished runner-up in the high jump clearing a distance of 5’2”.

A freshman, Reakes always has someone setting the bar higher for her because her mom, Marcie Reakes, won a state title in the high jump at Geneseo in 1991.

“I like trying to one-up her,” Abby laughed. “My goal is 5’4” or 5’5” because that’s what my mom jumped as a freshman.”

In middle school, Abby was able to break her mom’s middle school record in one of the final meets of the season last year.

The Leafs’ Alexandria Horne finished third in the high jump clearing 5’, and Evie Wilson came in fourth clearing 4’10”.

Josie Brown finished runner-up in the 800 in 2:24.60, and Abbi Barickman finished seventh in 2:43.56.

Brown competed at the elite field at the Distance Night in Palatine on April 21, and she ran to a 34 place finish among the star-studded field.

Horne finished runner-up in the 200 in 28.16, and Reakes finished eight in 28.16.

Alison Bowers earned a runner-up finish in the 400 in 1:01.95, and Esther Brown landed third in 1:05.27.

In the 1600, Geneseo’s Lauren Belvel finished third in 5:46.44, and Anna Girten landed fifth in 5:52.62.

Maddi Barickman finished runner-up in the shot put with a throw of 33’2.5”, and Allie Mackey landed fifth with a throw of 89’11”.

Brenna McGuire claimed third in the shot put with a throw of 33’2.5”.

Alexys Johnson finished third in the pole vault clearing 8’6”, and Wilson earned fifth with a jump of 8’6”.