Logan Hall stayed on par with his goals in comparison to idol Jon Davis last year
2017 State Champion: Logan Hall (Arthur-Lovington) 9:13.74
Key Returners: Logan Hall (Arthur-Lovington), Wyatt McIntyre (Athens), Trey Houmes (Hoopeston), Eli Ten Eyck (Pittsfield), Jack McNabola (Chicago F.W. Parker), Jackson Stewart (Decatur St. Teresa), Javon Watkins (Madison), Wyatt Wolfersberger (St. Joseph-Ogden)
Season Outlook: This event will be between Logan Hall and Wyatt McIntyre. McIntyre won 1A State for XC this fall but Hall, the defending state champion, is looking for redemption via the 3200. Hall ran 9:05 last year and will be aiming for that elusive sub-9:00. McIntyre was slowed by nagging injuries last spring otherwise he would have challenged for supremacy. Joining them are returning all-staters, Trey Houmes (5th), Jack McNabola (7th), Jackson Stewart (8th), and Javon Watkins (9th). In talking with to St. Teresa's Head Boys Track Coach Bryan Kenney, about Jackson Stewart he said, "Jackson had a outstanding cross country season. He is looking to go back to state this year in both the 1600 and 3200." Don't forget McNabola after coming off of a fine cross country campaign in which he placed third. He is ticketed for some wonderful times. Don't be surprised to see thing under 9:20 this season.
Riley Wells was the top sophomore in the country last year; Wells is the top returner in the state of Illinois
2017 State Champion: Riley Wells (Rockford Christian) 1:52.84
Key Returners: Wells, Brandon Schnitker (Nashville), Jacob Bryan (Illini West), Gary Cates (DeeMack), Ian Hussung (Oregon), Jason Landon (Carlinville), Koby Brackemeyer (Morrison), Shane Yamco (Riverton), Jason Yaccino (Westminster)
Season Outlook: All eyes will be on Riley Wells in this race. The junior took home the state title last year with a US#1 time as a sophomore and is looking to do it again as a junior. Wells had a great XC season taking 5th at 1A State this season. Wells has good leg speed to boot often running anchor on his team's 4x4 relay. Returning with Wells are All-Staters, Brandon Schnitker (2nd)- #3 overall in Illinois, Jacob Bryan (3rd), Jason Yaccino (4th), Gary Cates (5th), Ian Hussung (6th), Jason Landon (7th), and Koby Brackemeyer (8th). Schnitker had a great XC season taking 19th at 1A State but, he is not happy with it. He took 14th the year before. Brandon wants redemption and he wants it in the 800. Overall, this event is going to be stacked and it will resemble 3A at the top of the charts with talent and times.
Returning top performances:
There will be no such Tanner "Luck" in 2018; look for some fast times this season
2017 State Champion: Tanner Chada (Hinckley Big Rock) 4:18.35
Key Returners: Eli Ten Eyck (Pittsfield), Logan Hall (Arthur-Lovington), Jacob Bryan (Illini West), Wyatt McIntyre (Athens), Jack McNabola (F.W. Parker), Jackson Stewart (St. Teresa), Riley Wells (Rockford Christian), Trey Houmes (Hoopeston), Noah McIntyre (Athens)
Season Outlook: This will be a race between Eli Ten Eyck (2nd), Logan Hall (3rd), Jacob Bryan (4th), and Wyatt McIntyre (6th) as starters. Wyatt has the biggest edge on the others after winning 1A State XC this past Fall. Hall was not that far behind him tho, Hall took 2nd. The McIntyre brothers are excited about racing the 1600, Wyatt said, "I really don't have any time goals yet. I just want to stay healthy. I really don't know the mileage I'll be hitting, I'm just gonna stay consistent and slowly build up." And Noah thoughts were: "I'm focused on just getting to state. I have had a solid winter training and i have been taking advantage of it." Let's throw in Riley Wells as a name who could come in and command dominance. Aside from being an overall great athlete with cross country down to the 400, Wells did run an impressive 4:26 as a freshman. Don't be surprised if he drops something under 4:15 and put the scare into the returners paradise.