Team: Yorkville (IL)
Analysis: With six of seven runners returning from a team that placed 18th at NXN a year ago, expectations are now much higher for Yorkville. But first, they'll have to get past rival Naperville North. A year ago, Yorkville was second as a team in its Class 3A championship and second at NXR Midwest, never quite getting an edge from their neighbor up north. But Yorkville has pieces that could get it done in 2018.
Senior Emily Eberhart and sophomore Helena Kleronomos will be counted on to set the tone throughout the season. The squad enters the season with an 18:39.42 average and a scoring split of just 45 seconds. That depth will ultimately pay dividends in tough races. Yorkville is also ranked No. 3 in returning 3-mile team scores -- only behind Great Oak (CA) ...and Naperville North (IL).