DyeStat Illinois – 2016 IHSA 3A Regional Previews

Friday, October 21 2016 - IHSA 3A Cross Country Regionals-West Chicago - Ricardo Del Toro

DyeStat Illinois – 2016 IHSA 3A Regional Previews

Published by DyeStatIL.com  Yesterday, 10:24am

By Michael Newman

DyeStat IL Editor



The first steps to Detweiller Park start on Saturday as 15 3A Regionals will take place across the state. Teams that finish in the top six in their regional will advance to next week’s sectional races. Here is a look at each of the regional meets.

Edwardsville Sectional

Andrew Regional @ Turtlehead Lake

Boys – The transition of athletes from the closed Lincoln-Way North to #17 Lincoln-Way East has gone quite well heading into the state series. The Griffins enter this meet in good shape after winning the SWSC-Blue title ahead of Sandburg. They will be the favorites in this meet with the possibility of scoring under 35 points. The team could have four runners in the first seven led by Noah Healy and Brett Gardner. That strength up front will benefit them in this meet. Lincoln-Way Central and Lincoln-Way West both scored 36 points at the SWSC-Red Meet with Central winning the conference title. They could have a split of 46 seconds or faster led by Josh Perch. That pack could solidify a second place finish. It could be tough to catch East though. Lincoln-Way West has a strong first three that could place in the first eight. Their split on five could be big (near 110 seconds). Watch for them to keep their four runner pack split under 60 seconds. Lincoln-Way West’s Evan Mitchell should be the favorite to win the individual race with East’s Noah Healy close to him.

Girls – It should be the three Lincoln-Way schools on top in this race. Lincoln-Way Central dominated the SWSC-Red meet scoring only 18 points. The scenario could be the same in this race as Kelly Robbins and Madison Smith could lead five runners that could place in the top ten. A split of under 50 seconds could also help that cause. Lincoln-Way East has the power up front with the possibility of having their top four in the first eight led by Jenna Couwenhoven. A 30 second gap between their fourth and fifth runners makes it tough for this team to catch Central. Lincoln-Way West will have Jenna Diers in the front of the race. Their key is keeping the split on the pack within 30 seconds of each other and 45 seconds of Diers in order to challenge for the win. Diers, who finished fourth in her conference race, will challenge Robbins and Smith for the individual title.

Normal Community Regional @ Maxwell Park

Boys - #20 Minooka did not run their best race last week at the Southwest Prairie Meet finishing second. They will be the favorite in this race. I don’t expect Soren Knudsen to go all out in this race this week but he should be the big favorite. The pack behind Knudsen will need to keep their gap to within 30 seconds of each other. Jordan Freese being second in this race would be a big plus for the Indians. Yorkville ran a good race last week at their conference meet and will be Minooka’s top challenger. The Foxes like to run a tight pack and could have their top five within 35 seconds of each other. Zach Price could lead three Yorkville runners in the first eight. Getting five in the first sixteen will benefit this team. Normal West has been improving weekly and should be third led by Tyler Dunn.

Girls – This could be one of the best races of the weekend pitting two of the top teams in the state. #2 Minooka continues to lower their top five as it was 80 seconds last week on their top five. That makes this team even tougher especially when you have Emily Shelton, Mackenzie Callahan, and Ashley Tutt all capable of taking the first three spots. Yorkville will be just as tough with Nicole Greyer wanting to break into Minooka’s top three. Alexis Grandys continues to get healthier and at the same time closer to the front. She was within eight seconds of Greyer last week. The key for Yorkville is a tight pack especially with a dual meet atmosphere that will surround the two teams. The Lady Foxes have to place five in the first place with a split under 30 seconds in order to win this race. Minooka will need #4 runner Vivian Van Eck to get in Yorkville’s pack and to have their top five in the first twelve. That could give Minooka anywhere from a two to a five point win. Nevertheless, this race should be extremely close.

Quincy Regional @ Bob Mays Park

Boys – This meet is basically the Southwest Conference Meet minus East St. Louis-Senior and adding Quincy. We could see #24 O’Fallon rest some of their top seven in this race. They have done that in the past. #25 Edwardsville had the same score as O’Fallon last week at conference and could win this meet if they keep their top seven in. If both run their aces, it will again be extremely close with O’Fallon trying to win outright with a tight pack. Edwardsville, led by individual favorite Franky Romano, needs to have their top five in the first fourteen in order to win. Romano will get competition from Granite City’s Andrew and Will O’Keefe along with O’Fallon’s Chris Conrad in the individual race.

Girls - #23 Edwardsville should be the big favorite in this race. The team has been able to switch off their runner up front meet to meet. Last week, it was Jaycie Hudson who was up front. Abby Korak and Abby Schrobilgen should lead the Tigers who could place their seven runners in the first seventeen. O’Fallon will have Brooke Witzel in the top three and a pack behind her that could run within fifteen seconds of each other. Edwardsville’s strength up front will neutralize that pack. Quincy could be the team to watch in third. Watch for Witzel and Kirak to be the favorites individually.

Marist Sectional

Hinsdale Central Sectional @ Katherine Legge Memorial

Boys – This eleven team regional is not one of the strongest in 3A. With only six teams advancing and running on the hills of Katherine Legge Memorial, you might not see top runners like Lyons Township’s Vince Zona and Danny Kilrea, or Hinsdale Central’s Blake Evertsen, or Oak Park-River Forest’s Irvin Loud running. It has happened in past regionals especially for #9 Hinsdale Central and #3 Lyons Township.  Both teams should make it to the Marist along with Oak Park-River Forest.

Girls - #7 Lyons Township got within six points of Glenbard West last week at the WSC-Silver Meet and are ready for the state series. They could have a tough time against host #9 Hinsdale Central whom they were ahead of last week.  It should be a close race with only six to eight points separating the two teams. Hinsdale Central’s Reilly Revord and Lyons Township’s Sarah Barcelona should battle for the individual race title. The Red Devilettes could have five in the first ten while Lyons could have five in the first twelve. Hinsdale Central tends to run a five second better split on the Lions. That could be the difference in this race. Oak Park-River Forest should be the third team having Mahal Schroeder and Caroline Gallo in the top ten.

Lockport Regional @ Dellwood Park

Boys – #2 Downers Grove North is coming off of a win at the WSC-Silver Championships running another top five split under 20 seconds. It should be no different in this race as the hills of Dellwood Park should give the Trojans a better opportunity to work on their pack running. It would not surprise me if they have their normal top seven that they could score a perfect 15. Southwest Prairie Champion #19 Plainfield South and Plainfield North will be close in the battle for second. South only ran an eight second split on their top five last week and should have a tight pack again on Saturday. Plainfield North could surpass their district rival but will need to put five runners in the first twenty with a 38 second split. Downers South and Benet Academy should be the next two teams in fourth and fifth.

Girls – I don’t think we will see a perfect 15 from #6 Downers Grove South like we did last week at the WSC-Gold Meet. They should be the favorites possibly putting five runners in the first seven in this race led by Katie Stapleton and Becky Versaskas. #24 Plainfield North finished third last week at Southwest Prairie. They do have the strength to finish ahead of #17 Lockport if Juliana Stogsdill and Megan Patton finish in the top five. Lockport should put all of their top five in the first twenty led by Morgan Bollinger and Madison Polinski that could put them close to Plainfield North. Stogsdill and Stapleton should be the front runners in this race.

Sandburg Regional @ Midlothian Meadows

Boys - #16 Sandburg should bounce back from their second place finish last week at their conference meet with a convincing win on Saturday. Dylan Jacobs was held of last week’s meet due to tendinitis. He could be in this race on Saturday. If so, he will be the favorite in this race along with teammate Martin Skucas. Watch for the Eagles to work on their pack running behind Jacobs and Skucas trying to stay within ten seconds of each other and thirty seconds to Skucas. Lindblom, Marist, and Shepard should fight for the second spot with only ten points separating those three teams. Shepard’s Caleb Washington will look to finish in the top three and try to split up Jacobs and Skucas.

Girls – Mother McAuley, Marist, and Sandburg will be the teams to watch in this race as only ten points could separate these squads. Marist could have their top three in the first five. The key is finding a way to get their top five split under 90 seconds in this race. Sandburg will be on their home course and could have a 45 second five runner split off of #1 runnerCasey Jensen or Erica Cerva. Mother McAuley will have Ashley Bryja up front in this race. Their key is keeping their pack within 30 seconds of each other and within a minute of Bryja. Marist’s Maryclare Leonard should challenge Bryja for the individual win. Keep an eye on Shepard’s Kelli Callahan could run away with the win also.

Niles West Sectional

Lake Park Regional @ Lake Park East Campus Course.

Boys – It will come down to the front running of York and the pack of Wheaton-Warrenville South. #8 York did not run their best race of the year last week at the WSC-Silver but still finished third in the race with a 66 second split on their top five. Charlie Kern and Sean MacGregor should be in the front in this race. They could have the first three places if Jackson Bode can stay close to MacGregor. #11 Wheaton-Warrenville South ran their split on five under 20 seconds last week at the DVC and will need the same kind of race to top York. It would help the Tigers if they could get Kyle Thompson or Aleksei Sorokin in the top five. If York runs a 75 second split with five in the first fifteen, York could win by five or more points. Genbard West and Wheaton North could be fighting for the third spot thirty points behind WWS / York. Watch for Lake Park’s Colin Kirkham to challenge for a top five finish.

Girls – If the Normal Girls Sectional race is not the best race of the weekend, then this race would be it with #4 Glenbard West and #5 Wheaton-Warrenville South leading this field. Glenbard West won the WSC-Silver title but just by six points as their #3 runner Katie Hohe was slowed by an injury. She finished 31st in that race. With Hohe in their lineup and healthy, the Hilltoppers could win by eight to ten points.  With Hohe out, the dynamics should change. The Tigers will need to put four runners in the first eight led by Sara Atkins and Allison McGrath. If they can improve on their split from 59 seconds last week, South might win this race. York is a solid third with Sarah May leading the team. There is no doubt who the individual favorites will be. Glenbard West’s Katelynne Hart and Lindsey Payne are the top two runners this year in the state. Watch for them to be the dominant figures in this race.

Loyola Academy Regional

Boys - #6 Maine South ran one of the most impressive team races in the state last week. The Hawks would like to repeat that effort again Saturday afternoon. They ran a 33 second on their top four as they placed four in the top seven. Their weakness last week was the 41 second gap between their fourth and fifth runners. Maine South could have four in the first seven in this meet led by CSL champion Reese Jordan. They just need to get that split down from the 74 seconds it was at last week. #10 New Trier also had a great race where their pace from two to five was only seven seconds. Warren Blood will be challenging Jordan in this race. The Trevians just need to keep their five runner split under 40 seconds if they want to challenge Maine South. Glenbrook South and Loyola Academy will be close together for the third spot. Loyola will have Paolo Tiongson towards the front but will need to get their five runner split under 60 seconds. Glenbrook South will rely on a tight pack (under 42 seconds on five) and to have Jack Whetstone and Alec Sanchez in the top ten. Jordan, Blood, and Tiongson will face off for the individual title.

Girls - #20 New Trier will need to rely on a tight pack to upend #14 Maine South in this race. The Hawks will have the front runners led by individual favorites Maddie Dingle and Olivia Nizolek. The potential of having five runners in the first eighteen is a must for this team. New Trier will need to have a split under 57 seconds for the win. Caroline Fix should be in the top five. The next four runners need to be in by fourteenth spot in order to take home the team win. Glenbrook South and Evanston will challenge for the third spot with only a couple of points separating those two teams.

St. Ignatius Regional @ Washington Park

Boys – This should be a close team race between #12 Whitney Young, #23 St. Ignatius, and Jones Prep. I could see ten to thirteen points separating the three teams. St. Ignatius is peaking at the right time as it showed last week at the CCL Championships when they finished second. Michael Obrion has stepped up as the #1 runner for the team. The key for the Wolfpack is the pack behind Obrion. The four runners need to stay within 15 seconds of each other and have the pack stay within 23 seconds of Obrion. Whitney Young ran a good race to win the City Championship last week led by the front running of Keduse Worku. This team will be tough if Clayton Mendez can be in the top four as the team’s top runner with Worku right behind him. The team is capable of running a 40 second split on their top five but will need two runners in the first five to make that pack that more effective. Jones Prep could surpass both teams especially if they have freshman Ian Bacon in the top five. Bacon won the freshman race at the City championships last week and could be the team’s #4 runner on Saturday. Jeremy Adams will be one of the top runners in this race. Jones Prep needs to get one more runner besides Adams in the top ten and keep their pack split behind Adams at 15 seconds. Fenwick and Illiana Christian should be battling for the fourth spot. City Champion Keduse Worku will battle Clayton Mendez and Jeremy Adams for the regional individual championship.

Girls – Fenwick will be the team to beat in this race especially after an impressive performance in winning the GCAC title last Saturday. The key for the Friars is a pack under 40 seconds and the possibility of having all scorers in the top ten. Delaney Gibbons and Nicole Finn lead the pack. The next three teams could be at least 75 points behind Fenwick. Only handful of points will separate Lane Tech, Jones Prep, and Whitney Young. Lane Tech will have Maggie Scholle and Maddie King in the top ten. Their pack will be within ten seconds of each other but will need to move within 60 seconds of King to secure second. Jones does not have the typical “front runner” but a strong pack with a 40 second split. They just need to get their five scorers in the top twenty-five to get the second qualifying spot. Whitney Young has a good split on their first four runners that averages near 40 seconds. Their gap between their fourth and fifth runners is near 60 seconds. That will need to come down by 30 seconds for this team to be among the top three. Maggie Scholle won the individual race at the city championships last Saturday. The Lane Tech senior should be the one watch in this race.

Waukegan Sectional

Grant Regional @ Camp Henry Horner

Boys - #4 Lake Zurich will be the team to watch in this meet. A good thing for the Bears is getting their top three runners (Brian & Kyle Griffith, Matt Pereira) in the first four places. This individual field is stronger than you think. Lake Zurich most likely will place their top four within the first ten runners. The key is keeping their split under 70 seconds with Eric Metzger finishing 20th or better. Palatine could be within 20 points of Lake Zurich especially if they can get one more runner in the top ten with Brian Leonard. The Pirates also need to have a split of 54 seconds or better on their top five to secure second. Fox Valley Conference rivals Cary-Grove and Crystal Lake South will challenge for the third spot along with Barrington and McHenry. The individual race should be a fun one to watch. Jack Becker (Crystal Lake South HS) was on course record pace last week at Veteran Acres Park before he ran out of steam and could not finish. He should be in the front pack along with the Griffith Brothers and Matt Pereira as well as Brian Leonard. Also watch for Crystal Lake South’sJon Prus, Cary-Grove’s Alex Ratkovich, and Nick Laning (Barrington HS) to be up front as well.

Girls - #10 Palatine keeps improving and should be the favorite in this race. The Lady Pirates finished second in the MSL Championships last week. Danya Lloyd will be towards the front in this race. All Palatine needs to do is keep their split under 65 seconds and have five runners in the top twelve for the win. #19 Barrington has the slight edge ahead of #18 Grant. Barrington has Jocelyn Long who is the individual favorite in this race as well as a strong pack that could have five in the first eighteen. Grant has Danielle Osmon and Eva Cardy that could finish in the top six. They just need to have their next three runners to move into the top twenty to challenge Barrington. Jocelyn Long should be the big favorite in this race. Danya Lloyd and Crystal Lake South’s Caitlin Bruzzini will battle for second.

Hoffman Estates Regional @ Busse Woods

Boys – This race is a repeat of last week’s MSL race on this course between #5 Hersey and #7 Prospect. In last week’s race, it was Hersey that came away with the 15 point win. This race will be a man on man dual meet kind of feel. Both teams have great packs. Prospect has the potential to have an 18 second five man split. Hersey could run under 35 seconds on their 5 man pack. The key for Hersey is getting Jacob Krupa and Josh Methner in before a Prospect runner crosses the line. They will also need to get their fourth and fifth runners in ahead of Prospect’s fifth. All Prospect needs to do is have Jack Terry and Jack O’Donnell in between the Hersey front two and have their top five in the first eleven. Hersey’sJacob Krupa and Josh Methner, Prospect’s Jack Terry or Jack O’Donnell, Danny Peterson (Fremd HS, Palatine) and Jack Wortman (Hoffman Estates HS) will be the runners to watch up front.

Girls - #8 Prospect had a great race last week on this course in winning the MSL Championship. With less runners in the race, it could be closer between Prospect and #12 Hersey for the regional title. Brooke Wilson leads Prospect who will need to have five runners in the first thirteen to win. Hersey should have Hailey Bowes and Sarah Harden in the top four as well as Teagan Beckley in the top ten. The Huskies need to get their fourth and fifth runners in the top seventeen to have them in position to surpass Prospect. Only five to seven points could separate the two squads. Schaumburg will have the edge on Fremd for the third position especially if the can get Madison Marasco and Lauren Kubinski in the top five. It should be another great race for the individual title between Wilson and Marasco. Last week, Wilson won the individual title while Marasco was twelve seconds back in third. It should be a closer race on Saturday.

Libertyville Regional @ Adler Park

Boys - #21 Highland Park and #22 Mundelein are the only ranked teams in this regional race. Mundelein may have the edge if they can get Ben Kraus and Robert St. Clair ahead of Highland Park’s first runner. Mundelein will also need to have a split on five of 32 seconds or faster to secure the win. Highland Park lives and dies with strong pack running. They will need to have that here in order to come away with the win. They will need Jonathan Rosenfeld to finish in the top five as well as getting five runners in the first seventeen with a split on five of 26 seconds or faster. Stevenson could be a surprise up front if they can get Nikita Smrnov and Brett Lucas to finish in the top ten. The individual race is up for grabs. It could be Alex Tam (Libertyville HS) that will have the home course advantage as the slight favorite.

Girls – It should be close with Stevenson and Libertyville challenging for the team title. Both teams are similar through three runners. Stevenson has the edge on the fourth and fifth runners. Libertyville could close the gap on Stevenson if they can place five runners in the first eighteen and have their top three ahead of Stevenson’s top three. Highland Park and Lake Forest will challenge for the third qualifying spot. It should be a close individual race with Natalie Sparreo (Stevenson HS, Lincolnshire), Melissa Manetsch (Libertyville HS), and Brett Chody (Lake Forest HS) most likely being within six seconds of each other.

West Aurora Sectional

Batavia Regional @ Kress Creek Farms, West Chicago

Boys - #1 Neuqua Valley is the clear favorite in this race. This may be an instance where we do not see all of Neuqua’s top five running rather rest them for next week’s sectional race. #13 Marmion Academy is the choice for the next spot especially if they can get Charlie Zimmer and Michael Ronzone finishing in the top five. It will be close for the next four spots with Oswego, Batavia, East Aurora, Oswego, and Waubonsie Valley all challenging to get to West Aurora next week. Oswego will need to have Bennett Peterson in the top ten as well as their top five in the first thirty. Batavia could have a tight pack at 20 seconds led by Sean Adams. That pack does need to start at fourteenth place and end at twenty-sixth. East Aurora ran a great race last week at UEC. They will just need to get Ricardo Del Toro in the top ten with a split under 56 seconds on the top five. Oswego East will have Dylan Zangri in the top ten. Their split just needs to be under 47 seconds off of Zangri. Waubonsie Valley could advance if their top five split is under 30 seconds with Christian Freitag and Wes York finishing between tenth and fifteenth.

Girls – This is a deep field in this race with four ranked teams challenging for the regional title. #13 Metea Valley could have four runners in the first ten led by Nicki Cast and Keely Weber. They just need to have a 42 second split or better on their top five. Caitlin Horn should be in the top five for #16 Neuqua Valley. The Wildcats will just need to keep five in the first seventeen with a split of 45 seconds or better. #15 Batavia ran their best race of the year last week at the UEC. They will need to have good pack running in this race with Marygrace Golden and Audrey Pellico in the top ten and a 25 second split on five supporting that finish. #21 Oswego will have Isabelle Christensen and Grace Pagone in the front. The two runners should be the race favorites. The Panthers just need to have their pack behind the two within twenty seconds of each other and within 45 seconds of their front runners.

Rockford Guilford Regional @ Rockford University

Boys – Huntley is the favorite in this race. It is possible for them to have four place in the top five led by Jadon Conroy and Jeremy Roe. They just need to keep their split on five under 44 seconds. DeKalb has been running great of late finishing fourth last week at the NIB-2 Meet. Mitchell Bishop and Thomas Wuchte should finish in the top ten. They just need to put five runners in the top twenty to secure the second spot. Rockford East could be a surprise especially with individual race favorite Jordan Van Barriger up front. The E-Rabs just need to get their top four ahead of DeKalb’s third runner in order to finish second.

Girls – Huntley and Hononegah should battle for the team title. Huntley should have Mary Raclawski and Victoria Watkins in the top five as will Alicia Repka and Taylor Frommer for Hononegah. Huntley could finish with their scorers in the first twelve. DeKalb will be the next team having Katherine Olsen and Christina Ryzhov placing in the top ten. Hononegah’s Alicia Frepka should be the individual favorite with Huntley’s Mary Raclawski close behind.

West Chicago Regional @ Kress Creek Farms

Boys – This race will be a repeat of last week’s UEC race where #15 Geneva edged St. Charles East by six points. DVC rivals Naperville Central and Naperville North could be close to those two teams. Geneva has a strong first four led by UEC Champion Josh Rodgers. The key for the Vikings is having their five runner split under 65 seconds for them able to win. St. Charles East ran a 40 second split on their top five last week led by Jake Beno. They will need to have five runners in the first sixteen with a 32 second split in order to take home the regional trophy. Naperville Central did not run great last week at DVC but have the potential to pull of the surprise especially if Thomas Shilgalis and Thomas Chavez finish in the top five. Naperville North could also finish in the top three if they can keep their top five split under 35 seconds and three runners in the first ten led by Matt Boelke. Josh Rodgers should be the individual favorite in this race.

Girls - #1 Naperville North is the team to watch in this race but don’t sleep on #11 Geneva. The Vikings have a good front three in Sophia McDonnell, Emma Ehrhardt and Adrine Larsen who finished in the top four last week at the UEC meet. Naperville North has a strong top five that could finish in the top eight led by Sarah Schmidt and Alex Morris. Naperville Central does not have the power up front. They do have a good pack that could run within 30 seconds of each other and all be in the top twenty. That could put them ahead of Geneva. St. Charles East, St. Charles North, and Bartlett should be the other teams advancing. St. Charles North’s Audrey Ernst and Naperville North’s Sarah Schmidt should be the individual favorites in this race.

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