Cross country team capsulesWednesday, September 1 2010 -
Cross country team capsules
Last season: 6th in the Aurora Christian Class A Sectional
Preview: According to Copple, this is the best boys team the school has ever fielded. Watch for junior Sam Schuette and sophomore Jake Gehman to battle each other for the top spot. They will be joined by juniors Jake Wert and Jared Osika, along with sophomore Billy Howorth.
Aurora Central Catholic
Coach: Troy Kerber
Last season: 6th in the Aurora Central Catholic AA Regional
Preview: The Chargers are paced by sectional-qualifier Jimmy Spencer. "We are running pretty strong," Kerber said. Also keep an eye out for sophomores Matt Meyers, Adrian Alviar and Oscar Gomez, along with juniors Alex Duncan and Arnulfo Olivia. "We are very young and very talented," Kerber said.
Coach: Shane Gillespie
Last season: 7th in West Aurora Class AAA Sectional
Preview: Senior Gerardo Paleo "will be a tremendous front runner for us, while the pack behind him will work to stay close and run as a tight group," Gillespie said. Other Tomcats to watch are seniors Felipe Rodriguez and Hector Ruiz, along with junior Ricky Barajas.
Coach: Daniel Billish
Last season: 15th in Class AA IHSA State Finals
Preview: The Cadets are currently ranked in the Top 5 by Dyestat Illinois and ESPN Rise Magazine. Senior Ben Kanute will lead a pack of six returning runners from last year's state-qualifying team when he returns mid-season after competing in Hungary at the World Junior Triathlon. Until then, look for seniors Bennett Marsh and Chris Hebert to pace the team. Billish is excited about his stellar freshmen class and the acquisition of track state-qualifiers Eddie Grahovec, Brady Hunt and Matt Choice from football and soccer. "...The program has been adjusted to make this run a reality," Billish said.
Coach: Christopher Rohde
Last season: 8th in West Aurora Class AAA Regional
Preview: According to Rohde, the Mustangs are excited about competing in their first full year of varsity cross country. Metea Valley will be led by junior twins Matt and Joe Stewart, who each qualified for sectional competition last fall.
Coach: Kevin Rafferty
Last season: 5th in West Aurora Class AAA Regional
Preview: The Warriors will be led by senior David Groeber, who could finish his high school cross country career with a trip to the state finals, if all goes as planned. Joining him on the course will be seniors Joe Brant, Bornel Nicholson and Jesse Martinez; juniors Alex Foote and Christian Noblett, along with sophomore Julian Morrison. Hoping to also crack the starting lineup is freshman Garrett Eicher.
Coach: Mike DiDomenico
Last season: 11th in St. Charles Class AAA Sectional
Preview: The Bulldogs start the season in a new conference, the Upstate Eight River Division and with a young squad. Pacing Batavia will be junior Mike Redmond, who finished seventh at the West Aurora Class AAA Regional. Other returning starters from last year's sectional-qualifying squad include senior Matt Lash and sophomore Trevor Hollis.
Coach: Bob Thomson
Last season: 14th in Class AAA IHSA State Finals
Preview : Recent Junior Olympic triathlon silver medalist Kevin McDowell will miss several weeks of the season competing in the World Junior Triathlon in Hungary. Despite this, the Vikings will still be a tough team to beat. Stepping up are seniors Connor Bartel, Bill Koskiewicz and Ryan Ahern. "The boys are working very hard," said Thomson of his young team. Others to watch are sophomore steepleweb Wendt and junior Ryan Fromm.
Coach: Chad Clarey
Last season: 5th in Class AA IHSA State Finals
Preview: Seniors Trevor Holm, Grant Alef and Tommy Whittaker will provide the leadership on the course for the Knights. "They bring a ton of big meet experience," said Clarey. Holm earned All-State honors last fall, when he finished 23rd overall. Juniors looking to make an immediate impact are Clayton Brundige, Jake Ginther and steepleweb Rehkopf. "This year's squad is working to build a strong pack that will chase front runner Holm," Clarey added, "If we can keep our split from Holm around 60 seconds or less, then that pack could make some noise when the state series comes."
Coach: Daniel Whipple
Last season: 2nd in Sandwich Class AA Regional
Preview: The Panthers have been working hard since last season to run as a team and work together on the course. "If we do this," Whipple said, "good things are going to happen." Pacing Oswego will be returnees Jared Konrady, Adam Lowry, Zack Kingsbury, Caleb Beck, Brad Musselman and Mike Morrell.
Coach: Scott Gengler
Last Season: 8th in the Class AAA Bolingbrook Regional
Preview: Freshman Nick Karasch has sprinted out to the No. 1 position for the young pack of Wolves. He will be joined by juniors Jordan Mahera, Colin Jecha and Rudy Ballesteros and sophomore Joe Molina. "We're going to have a good year," said Gengler, "and surprise some people."
Coach: Matt Johnson
Last season: 3rd in the Seneca Class A Regional
Preview: The Reapers goal is to make it to the state finals this year, after succeeding in reaching sectionals last year. Plano will be paced by seniors Adam Morello and Brandon Miller. "We are coming out of the gate strong," Johnson said of his squad's Early Bird Tournament win at Morris. Keep an eye on Morello's younger brother Max, who has eased his way into the No. 3 spot after foregoing soccer.
Coach: Chris Muth
Last season: 13th in Class AA IHSA state finals
Preview: The Foxes could be the team to beat this season, as Yorkville returns 11 of 12 top runners from last year's squad that competed in the state final. Jake Callahan, Scott King and Eric Baker have the opportunity to earn All-State honors if they have the season Muth believes they are capable of. Also keep an eye on Chris Kellogg, Zac Arcara, Karl Bomba, Shaun O'Malley, Nick Harrison, Justin Vacha and Kyle Dhuse. "Our goal is to try and break into the top five this year....if we do that, we will have the best boys cross country team at Yorkville High School in the past 25 years," Muth said.
Coach: Jeff Smith
Last season: 5th in Sandwich Class AA Regional
Preview: Senior Mike Gaydos, who placed 68th in the AA IHSA Finals last fall, is on target to pace the Indians. Also joining Gaydos on the veteran squad will be seniors Edgar Velasco, James Cox and Zach Barrera, along with juniors Joe Gaesser and Matt Lundeen. "That's where most of our leadership will come from," Smith said.
Coach: Brian Davis
Last season: Finished 6th in the Seneca Class A Regional
Preview: Sectional-qualifier Mitch Fox returns to pace the Bobcats this fall. "He's a good leader and always runs with a ton of heart," Davis said. Other runners to keep an eye on for the Bobcats are Art Connolley, Joe Tuburan, Zach York and Josh Lesko.
Coach: Priscilla Copple
Last season: 13th in Class A IHSA state finals
Preview: Junior Sarina Oleson, who finished 21st in state last fall, will once again pace the Eagles. "Sarina is going to be awesome," Copple said. Joining Oleson in the hunt for a team Top 10 finish will be seniors Amy Berger, Sage Millard, Sydney Bennett and Janea Epperson, along with sophomore Anna Pape and freshman Teagan Terando. "I'm looking for Teagan to give her (Oleson) a run for her money."
Aurora Central Catholic
Coach: Troy Kerber
Last season: 11th at Belvidere Class AA Sectional
Preview: The Chargers return seven runners with Top 7 experience and feel they enter the season with Class AA State Meet potential. The Chargers will be led by juniors Anna Sestak and Bailey Shemenski, along with sophomores Jenna Koerner and Corinne Groom, all of whom ran in the Chargers' lead pack last season. "We are a good pack team." Kerber said.
Coach: Angela Cassetto
Last season: 10th at St. Charles AAA Sectional
Preview: Junior Elisia Meyle, along with the sophomore pack of Rachel Cavender, Greta Meyle and Nicole Bartell are expected to do well for the Blackhawks once again.
Coach: Shane Gillespie
Last season: 8th at West Aurora Class AAA Regional
Preview: Seniors Carla Salas and Mayra Patino, along with sophomore Vanessa Martinez, will be joined by sophomore Klaryssa Arch on the course this fall. "The team is growing," Gillespie said, "Carla had a great summer and has her sights set on qualifying for the sectional meet for the first time."
Coach: Vic Mead
Last season: 7th at ACC Regional
Preview: The Royals return two sectional qualifiers in senior Kelly Keiffer and sophomore Kara Kalis. According to Mead, Rosary's goal is to finish in the top three of the Suburban Christian Conference and qualify as a team for sectionals. Also returning to the pack are Hannah Schafer, Emma Witte, Melissa Lifka and Hannah Wulbert.
Coach: Liz Kolkay
Last season: Advanced to AA Sectional
Preview : Seniors Elizabeth Dupuis and Alexis Kingery return to pace the Warriors. They will be joined on the course by returning sophomores Kristina Chapman, Ashley Bruner, Lauren Newmyer and Elizabeth Sapoznik. "We are stronger than ever," said Kolkay of her team of veteran runners.
Coach: Joy Gonzalez
Last season: Did not compete at varsity level
Preview: Upstate Eight Conference fresh-soph champ and sectional qualifier Kathleen Adolf will pace the Mustangs in their first season as a varsity squad. "She is definitely someone to watch out for," said Gonzalez. Teammate Rachel Dorencz, who also qualified for sectionals last season is recuperating from an injury and should be back midseason. Other runners to watch are Amy Nealon, Lauren Lindholm, and Analise Carmona.
Coach: Chad Hillman
Last season: 12th at St. Charles AAA Sectional
Preview: The young Bulldogs will be paced by the sophomore trio of Rachel Spalding, Bari Robinson and Sarah Ganster, as well as junior Haley Clabough.
Last season: 5th in Class AAA IHSA State Meet
Preview: Thomson's talented team of freshmen is all grown up and will be racing one last season as a team. The Vikings'squad has won two IHSA titles and finished fifth last season at the state meet. Leading Geneva will be the pack of Kelly Whitley, Tess Ehrhardt, Rachel Hammond, Liza Tauscher and Megan Brady. Expect the girls to go out in style with another trip to the state meet. "I want them to go out with a good season," Thomson said.
Coach: Doug Ecker
Last season: 6th at Belvidere AA Sectional
Preview: The Knights return five of their Top 7 runners from last year's squad and will be a strong contender for the newly formed Northern Illinois Big 12 Conference title. Three-time All- Western Sun Conference runner Andie Strang will lead the pack, followed by teammates senior Kris Bowen; and sophomores Ashley Castellanos, Abby Dodis and Maggie Brundige. Junior Jen Howland and freshman Sydney Strang add depth. "If we can stay away from injuries and sickness, the girls should be very competitive," Ecker said.
Coach: Eric Simon
Last season: 6th at Sandwich AA Regional
Preview: The Panthers doubled in size and then some, from last year's squad. Returning are seniors Alyson Fisher, Hilary Etheridge, Tatiana Anaya; juniors Caroline Sikibinski and Riley Vann; and sophomores Alex Choi and Ashley Golembeski. "I look for us to be a much improved team this year," Simon said. Also keep an eye on sophomores Kelsey Hjorth and Nina Hauser, and junior Lauren Choi.
Coach: Stephanie Scapino
Last season: 11th at Lockport AAA Sectional
Preview: State-qualifier Ariel Michalek returns to pace the Wolves this fall. Joining her will be Rachel Holzrichter, Dominique Pasqua, Hayley Zweig, Michelle Tellez and Veronica Reyes. Scapino is excited about her team doubling in size and the early results she is seeing in practice. "I am anxious to get into some competitions to see what we can accomplish as a group, as well as individually," she added.
Coach: Matt Johnson
Last season: Did not compete as a team at Regional
Preview: Pacing the Reapers this fall will be senior Karson Greiter and junior Lizzy Urbina. Both runners are two-time sectional qualifiers, with Greiter competing in the state meet her freshman year. "They both have a shot at qualifying for state," said Johnson.
Coach: Chris Muth
Last season: 2nd in Class AA IHSA State Meet
Preview: The Foxes return their top five runners from last year's state runner-up squad. Leading the pack are All-State runners Ali Hester and Esther Bell. "They are currently ahead of their pace from last year," said Muth. Joining them in their quest for a second team trophy will be Casey Kramer, Bree Stupfert, Leena Palmer, Ashley Leonetti and Lindsay Foster. "We have a great group of hard working girls that could be on the verge of a very special season."
Coach: Jeff Smith
Last season: 7th at Sandwich AA Regional
Preview: Senior Victoria Pendry leads the Indians' pack, which includes veteran runners Gail Rogers, Taylor Ciceraro, Bri Miller and Megan Olson. "There is a lot of talent there," said Smith. Newcomers Amy Underwood, Kass Knur, Tor DeFily and Anna Ford are runners to watch for.