Lane Tech CPL Titles Highlight Festive Weekend

On-Site Coverage

On a cool but sunny Saturday morning that was fitting for a cross country festival, it would be the Chicago Public League Championship that would make its presence known on the grounds of southern section of Washington Park.

Lane Tech completed its task as the city’s top boys and girls programs by sweeping the varsity titles.  The Lady Indians won easily over meet favorite Northside Prep 37-72. Whitney Young placed third with 88 points, and Payton beat out Mather for fourth 95-123.

The men of Lane Tech performed an equally impressive performance in besting friendly foe Mather 38-79.  Defending champion Jones Prep took the third place spot with 84 points. Northside Prep held off Lincoln Park for the fourth position 103-126.

The girls started the action with a vengeance as they had numbers up top with Lane Tech senior Joanna Podosek and freshman Maggie Scholle pushing the pace.  In between them was junior Madison Weatherly of Northside Prep.  Since the race was stalled by an unimpressive first mile in 5:58, there were other runners lurking around for the kill.

Podosek opened up a little daylight around the 2k mark with Weatherly and Scholle chasing. The breakaway task didn’t last long as Scholle put on her own surge moments before the 2m mark leading by two seconds over Podosek 12:20-12:22. Weatherly was still in range about a second back.  The team race ensued more than 20 seconds further back and it appeared as though Lane was having its way with the field.  

The final moments of the race was academic for the Lady Indians who saw Podosek breeze home to victory for a second year in a row.  She ran three seconds slower than last year’s winning effort in 18:25 but this victory was with more conviction as she taught her young teammate Scholle a lesson on how to finish out a race.  Scholle ran a solid 18:30 for second and a considerable distance in front of Weatherly’s 18:37. Margaret Zahara of Whitney Young took fourth in 19:04.  Lane newcomer Roisin Mulkerrins rounded out the fifth spot in 19:12.

The boys finally got their turn to race after nearly an hour delay due to meet management issues.  The start was similar to the girls in that no one wanted to go out and assert themselves with an aggressive pace to separate the competitors from the pretenders.  

The opening mile was negotiated in 5:02 as Lane Tech’s Pavlo Hutsalyuk (Jr.) led among a ton of key runners. His partners in battle Jon Vara (Sr.), Oswaldo Lorenzana (Sr.), David Schmieg (Sr.), and Christian Badillo (Jr.) were in tow.  Jones Prep enlisted Peter Schaible (Sr.) and Kyle Maloney (Jr.) into the fray as did Mather’s senior trio of Deivi Tahiraj, Claudio Flores, and Zade Kurdieh.

Hutsalyuk continued to lead the field as they emerged from the east end of the park and back out into the main portion of the landscape.  However, just like last year, Jones Prep had something up their sleeves and at a minute’s notice Schaible took off in the fashionable "Jones breakaway."  Schaible ran clear of the field at this point and was on his way to a victory if no one went with him.

Schaible indicated after the race that the opening pace was comfortable as he sat on Lane’s pack for the first mile. He hit the second mile in 10:07 followed by Tahiraj and Kurdieh. Maloney was a step behind them- all around 10:15.  Lane did not deter from their season long winning formula as Vara, Schmieg, Hutsalyuk, and Lorenzana followed in a close stream.  The team race was essentially over if the Indians could hang on for the last mile.

Schaible’s mid-race surge was true and he steamed home ahead of teammate Maloney 15:13-15:14.  Kurdieh ran the race of his life taking third in 15:25 and ahead of Vara’s 15:31. Schmieg surged home in 15:31.86 for the fifth spot.  Lane was not done as Lorenzana checked in sixth (15:34), Hutsalyuk was ninth in 15:41 and Badillo closed out the team scoring with a 14th place finish in 15:50.

Key conference action from Saturday:

•    MSL: #3 Arlington Heights (Hersey) boys roll to MSL title over #15 Palatine 50-82. Hoffman Estates (Conant) junior Zach Dale ran one of the fastest times in meet history as he dusted the field with a smoking 14:26 mark; #2 Palatine girls won another league title but this one was rather easy as the Lady Pirates crushed #15 Barrington 43-106; Kaitlyn Ko (So., Buffalo Grove) won her first title in 17:07.

•    WSC Silver: #1 Elmhurst York boys continue to roll as they defeated #2 Hinsdale Central 38-50 at Proviso West HS. Downers Grove North senior Zack Smith proved to be the best man in the league easily defeating his teammate junior Ryan Clevenger 15:04-15:13; #4 Glenbard West welcomed back senior Madeline Perez as the Lady Hilltoppers topped #5 Hinsdale Central 23-66; freshman Alexa Haffe pulled away late to defeat Perez 17:27-17:43.

•    Chicago Catholic League: Chicago (St. Ignatius) sophomore Daniel Santino won the individual title in 15:03 but his #13 Wolfpack team had to settle for second place to #16 Wilmette (Loyola Academy) who won 34-38.  The Ramblers 34 second scoring split was the difference in the race.

•    Upstate 8: #7 Naperville (Neuqua Valley) boys repeated as champions 52-68 over #23 Batavia. Wildcat senior Nick Bushelle continues his strong second half of the season run winning comfortably over Bartlett senior Dan Cotton in 14:59; #13 Geneva girls turned back #18 Neuqua Valley 54-87; sophomore Mckenzie Altmayer of Geneva held on for the win in 17:51.

•    Southwest Conference: #4 O’Fallon endured another tough battle against #24 Edwardsville but prevailed 27-29; O’Fallon superstar senior Patrick Perrier emerged from hiding to win in 14:45; #7 girls completed a fine day for the Panthers family scoring a scant 21 points for the easy championship.

•    Southwest Suburban Conference: #6 Orland Park (Sandburg) won going away over Joliet Central 29-90; #9 Lockport girls defeated Sandburg 27-54.

•    CSL: Maine South senior Jack Carpenter won the individual title but #8 New Trier took the crown 33-61 over the #17 Hawks; junior Mimi Smith wasted little time in winning the title for her Lady Trevians in 17:01 at Niles West HS. Indeed her #3 New Trier team ran away with the gold plaque scoring a near perfect 19 points.

•    Fox Valley: Boys- 2A #7 Crystal Lake Central rolled to another crown scoring 59 points; Girls- unranked 3A Crystal Lake South surprised everyone in winning 88-89 over 2A #5 Crystal Lake Central and 2A #3 Woodstock who finished fourth with 107 points.  3A # Cary-Grove placed third.

Race Video/Interviews by Tony Jones