STERLING — For Rochelle track and field standouts Mason DeLille and Trevor Goodwin, their toughest competition has sometimes been each other.
The two Hubs have pushed each other to greater heights and lengths through the track and field season. Their hard work came to fruition during the IHSA Class 2A Sterling Sectional on Thursday, where the senior DeLille took first place in the high jump with a personal record of 6-2 and the sophomore Goodwin finished first in the triple jump, setting a new Rochelle Township High School fresh-soph record for the second time this year with a mark of 43-6 ½.
“I’m interested to see where I’m at compared to the other athletes at state,” Goodwin said. “I’m looking forward to seeing all of the best athletes and I’m going to give it all that I’ve got. Mason has definitely pushed me and he creates constant competition. I’ll be jumping, then he’ll pull out a huge jump that motivates me to step up. We’re always progressing off each other.”
DeLille and Goodwin have qualified for the IHSA State Championships, which will take place at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston next weekend. Goodwin will compete in the triple jump, while DeLille will participate in both the high jump and the triple jump after placing second in the triple jump with a mark of 43-2 during Thursday’s sectional.
“I’m looking forward to being at the state championships,” DeLille said. “I knew I wanted to make an impact with this being my last year, and I felt that I’ve done that. I want to enjoy the experience, and I want to prove to myself how good I can be. I’m looking forward to putting myself out there.”
DeLille entered his senior season with a personal record of 5-8 in the high jump, but the Carthage College signee has continued raising the bar throughout the spring. DeLille, who holds the RTHS varsity triple jump record of 44-7 ½, upped his personal record in the high jump to 6 feet earlier this season before reaching another new height on Thursday to claim his first-ever sectional event win.
“My main focus wasn’t the high jump because it was my secondary event,” DeLille said. “Coming into the sectional, my legs were feeling pretty good, and once I kept progressing upward, I knew it was going to be a good day. Once I cleared 6-2 and clinched the title, I was speechless. I was not expecting to do that today.”
Goodwin had previously set the RTHS fresh-soph triple jump record with a leap of 42-0 ¾ during the Carlson Hawk Classic at Oregon High School on April 26. The sophomore surpassed that mark by nearly 2 feet to win his first-ever sectional title on Thursday, stunning assistant coach Vic Worthington in the process.
“I came out of the pit and looked where the mark was at,” Goodwin said. “Once I saw my coach freaking out, I just lost it. I was expecting to try and get second or third today and barely qualify, and I was mainly looking for a personal record and I found it. I’ve been watching videos, improving my form and lifting more weights this year.”