2017 Pre-Season Preview: Countdown Begins With Class A Girls Unclassified


Chester High School

Last year's state finish: 25th

Coaches: Curt Gilpin (Head Coach), Jennifer Cartwright (Asst. Coach)

Key returners: Taylor Dunning (Sr.), Jessica Kattenbraker (Sr.), Shea Petrowske (Jr.), Elizabeth Soellner (Jr.), Avery Runge (So.), Addie Blechle (So.)

Coach Gilpin's thoughts on the season:  "We're bringing back all our top runners from last year and they are looking strong already. Our philosophy on how we approach practice and meets won't change, but we do have high expectations for the team this year."



Last year's state finish: 12th

Coaches: Jeremy Palmer (Head Coach), Jon Yoch and Shane Cress (Asst. Coaches)

Key Returners: Madison Throne (Jr.), Caroline Quarton (So.), Anna Baugher (So.), Brittnay Komor (Sr.), Haley Bolte (Jr.), Summer Beckham (So.)

Coach Palmer's thoughts on the season:  "We are going to remember the phrase: People do not remember how you start but how you finish as we progress through the season.  The student athletes have been putting in summer miles for a chance at November smiles."


Chicago Christian High School

Last year's state finish: 6th

Coach: Jake Christiansen

Key returners: Allie Boss (Sr.), Emily Damstra (Jr.), Leah Kuipers (Sr.), Julie O'Sullivan (Jr.), Kathleen Tkoletz (So.)

Coach Christiansen's thoughts for the season: "We lost 4 of our top 7 from last year, so we are not expecting to finish in the top 10 like we have the previous two years.  However, these girls have always risen to the occasion and worked hard, often surprising themselves and me with what God does through them.  There are a few newcomers to the team without much running experience, so it will be interesting to see how they develop throughout the fall and hopefully can give us that extra push at the end of the season."


Last year's finish:  9th- Edwardsville Metro East Lutheran Sectional
Coaches: Scott Edwards (Head Coach) and Juli Akal (Asst. Coach)
Key Returners: Michaela Tarpley (Jr.), Victoria Tarpley (Jr.), Lette Palen (Jr.), Alyssa Mendoza (So.), Jaidyn Peebles (Jr.)
Coach Edwards' thoughts on the season: "Looks like we will be a bubble team again this year.  We are a fairly young team with no seniors but our junior leadership is great.  Trying to get back to Detweiller for the 4th time in 7 years is our number one goal.   We could have some surprising freshman this year as the work ethic has been strong this summer.  Victoria Tarpley is a key component as we are not sure if she will be able to run until October but hopefully someone else will step up and fill her role.  Michaela Tarpley, who finished in the top 25 at sectionals last year, has been putting in the miles and could possibly break the top 10 at sectionals which would really give the team a boost points wise.  Others that could break the top 7 are Meg Bosse (Jr.), and Delaney O'Donnell (Fr.)."

Last year's finish: 11th- Effingham St. Anthony Sectional
Coach: Tim Bower
Key Returners: Kara Weichman (Sr.), Rebecca Habing (Jr.), Abby Bloemer (So.), Jennelle Vogt (Jr.), Marianna Hemmen (Sr.), Ashley Thompson (So.)
Nick's thoughts on the season: T-Town returns its top 5 and 6 of its top 7 from a team that finished 11th at the ultra-tough Effingham St. Anthony Sectional. The Shoes expect to lean on Kara Weichman who earned some state meet experience last year with a 56th place finish at Detweiller.


Rock Falls

Last year's finish: 13th at the Oregon Sectional

Coach: Mark Truesdell

Key Returners: Bailee Fortney (So.), Erin Porter (Fr.), Alex Gomez (So.)

Nick's thoughts on the season: The Rockets were an extremely inexperienced team last year with their top 4 runners at sectional all freshman. They are hoping with a little experience under their belts to make a solid improvement.  Bailee Fortney led the squad last year with a 34th place finish at state.  She could be in the mix for an all-state medal.