Snap Recap: Naperville Twilight Was Full Of Star Efforts

The start of the girl's varsity race was met with fierce intensity and excitement


It was just as the weathermen forecasted for North Naperville High School on Wednesday: Very warm and windy. These are conditions usually not suited for optimum cross country performances, but once again the creme rises to the top.

The girl's race opened with junior star Katelynne Hart of Glenbard West ready to re-issue herself to the public. It has been nearly a month since she last competed in an invitational. Meanwhile, it has been an opportunity for some of the state's top emerging and freshmen talent to enjoy the headlines. That was until the gun cracked at exactly 7:30. Hart immediately put a halt on any thoughts of a competitive race with a speedy opening mile in 5:15. The final verdict was an 18-second victory over Katrina Schlenker of Batavia in 16:35. Hart downplayed the event afterward by indicating that the focus is on her team and not her. 

The team race had a different spin than the individual one. It was just a few short days that #2 Naperville North, #1 Yorkville, and #3 Downers Grove South all traveled to Minnesota and competed in the Roy Griak Invitational. Yorkville walked away with the nine-point win 104-113. All three teams did well in the land of the lakes, but with a quick turnaround, it was time to move forward. The host Huskies needed a top-notched performance from its leader Alex Morris. They got it as the standout senior battled with Schlenker for much of the contest before settling for third in a season-best 16:58. Naperville North would put all seven runners in the top 25 and take the title 70-80.

1Katelynne Hart11Glenbard West High School16:35.701
2Katrina Schlenker9Batavia High School16:53.102
3Alex Morris12Naperville North High School16:58.703
4Brenna Cohoon11Downers Grove South High School17:31.604
5Samantha Poglitsch10Wheaton Warrenville South High School17:38.105
6Kailey Fox11Yorkville High School17:39.106
7Emily Eberhart12Yorkville High School17:40.007
8Mckenna Revord11Hinsdale Central High School17:42.208
9Vivian Van Eck12Minooka High School17:49.609
10Sophia Mcdonnell12Geneva High School17:53.1010


The boys side of things had its share of interesting storylines. The first one was the individual race. Naperville Central senior Thomas Shilgalis came in as the individual champion. He recently took over the state lead in the three-mile (14:11) as well as the subjective poll holder. Glenbard West senior Rory Cavan had other thoughts as he put pressure on Shilgalis and the field from the gun. The first mile around 4:44 was all that was needed to keep Shilgalis on his heels. Cavan would never relinquish his dominance and the final verdict was a 14:56 thriller. He was the only competitor under 15:00. Teammate senior Stephen Moody was second in 15:09. 

Neuqua Valley in typical coach Paul Vandersteen form with a new cast has progressed nicely this season. So it wasn't a surprise to see the Wildcats run in tandem led by seniors Chris Keeley and Michael Madiol. They paced their squad with fourth and sixth places respectively. Overall, the team was able to overcome Glenbard West's top two finish with five scorers in the top 25. The final score 71-79 was a statement made. The favorite coming in was red hot Downers Grove South. The Mustangs team placed 3rd. But crosstown foe and defending champion Downers Grove North took third followed by Chicago Jones in fourth.