Class A Boys Pre-Season Preview: #20-11

The goal of mid-level teams should be to get to the pinnacle (inside the top 10) and hopefully in a position to fight for a state trophy. There are some teams here who experienced tremendous success last year, but they must fight all over again this fall.


Head Coach/Coaches: Mike Egle
Last Year's Finish: 9th- State Championship
Key Returners: Andrew Brockmeier (Jr.), Dan Gomez (Sr.), Aidan Martin (Jr.), John Pins (Jr.), Anthony Vasquez (Jr.)
Projected Top 7: Brockmeier, Gomez, Martin, Pins, Vasquez, Nathan Gomez (Sr.), Jack Costanzo (Jr.)
Key Additions: Max Elder (Fr.)
Unexpected Losses: None
Coach Egle's Outlook: Dan Gomez should run sub 16:30. Our two other all-state 4x800m juniors give us a great top three. Andrew Brockmeier who ran excellent in the 800m this past spring should be close to 1530. Aidan Martin has been training hard this summer. His 50.xx 400m speed plus 1:58 800m shows his potential. We have a new freshman, Max Elder who could be a superstar freshman. All we need is a 5th guy. But when your one of the smallest schools in the state, It is always a challenge.

19. Eureka
Head Coach/Coaches: Olivia Morris and Matt O'Hanlon
Last Year's Finish: 10th-State Championship
Key Returners: Jack Cook (Sr.), Mitchell Danner (Jr.), Luke Albertson (Sr.), Cade Walder (Jr.)
Projected Top 7: Cook, Danner, Walder, Albertson, Matt Nowatney (Sr.), Charlie Bardwell (Fr.), Ryan Strawn (Sr.)
Key Additions: Charlie Bardwell (Fr.), Sye Vanmiddlesworth (Fr.), Gabe Royer (Fr.), Landon Wierenga (Fr.), Ian Wells (Fr.), Luke Wells (Fr.), Zach Ogg (Fr.), Caleb Scofield (Fr.)
Unexpected Losses: None
Coach Morris's Outlook: Our team is older and the potential is there, but some of our older guys don't have a lot of varsity running experience under their belt.

Head Coach: James Miller
Last Year's Finish: 18th- State Championship
Key Returners: Blake Sutherland (Sr.), Michael Carpenter (Sr.), Rayce Zike (Jr.), Logan Edwards (Jr.), Wiley Peters (So.), Joel Heynen (Sr.)
Projected Top 7: Sutherland, Carpenter, Zike, Edwards, Peters, Heynen, Owen Ray (Sr.)
Key Additions: Unknown
Unexpected Losses: Unknown
Milesplit's Outlook: The pirates look as if they will have a great front four runners with all of them already having sub 17:00 performances to their names. The one question that lies is who their number five will be. Currently, it looks to be 18:00 runner Wiley Peters, if they can find a fifth guy that can run around 17:30 then the pirates can make it to Detweiller in November.

Head Coach: Eric Zeller
Last Year's Finish: 9th- Decatur St. Teresa Sectional
Key Returners: Brian Dust (Jr.), Kennan Walsh (Jr.), Ty Wiedman (Jr.), Noah Tegeler (Jr.), Drew Dust (Jr.), Mick Willenborg (Jr.), Austin Faber (Jr.)
Projected Top 7: B. Dust, Walsh, Wiedman, Tegeler, D. Dust, Willenborg, Faber
Key Additions: Unknown
Unexpected Losses: Unknown
Milesplit's Outlook: The Bulldogs return their entire squad from last year who were actually all sophomores. While they are on the rise this will be more of a bridge year for the team as they go from an ok team to a good team this year and possibly a great team in 2020. Brian Dust leads the squad as a potential runner that can break 16:00. Dust had a great track season in some of the faster events and qualified for state in both the 800m and 4x800m. Ty Wiedman broke the 17:00 barrier last season and can run around 16:45 this year. The depth will really need to come out for the Bulldogs if they want to take that next step.

Head Coach/Coaches: Dustin Franckey/Mike Tipsord, Sally Ellis
Last Year's Finish: 20th- State Championship
Key Returners: Ryder James (So.)
Projected Top 7: James, Daniel Busby (So.), Nik Schnabel (Sr.), Jesse Barfield (So.), Keagan Busboom (So.), Paul Cleary (Jr.), Liam McMullin (Jr.),
Key Additions: None
Unexpected Losses: None
Coach Franckey's Outlook: We have a young core again this year, but they're wise beyond their years. We will have 11-12 guys vying for top 7 spots again this year with 14 guys that broke 17:45 last year.

15. Benton
Head Coach/Coaches: Brett McLain
Last Year's Finish: 19th- State Championship
Key Returners: Joey Sample (Sr.), Chase Owens (So.), Brady Gischer (Sr.), Parker Sieveking (Jr.)
Projected Top 7: Sample, Owens, Gischer, Sieveking, Reese Johnson (Jr.), Ryan Sneed (Fr.), Kaden Beadle (Jr.)
Key Additions: Reese Johnson (Jr., Neoga), Ryan Sneed (Fr.)
Milesplit's Outlook: This will be possibly the best year that the Rangers have had for awhile. They seem to be lead by a transfer from Neoga named Reese Johnson. Johnson had a great xc season last year that saw him run 15:30.60 and place near the top 50 at the state meet. He will be a potential all-stater this year. Having five kids that can easily challenge the 17:00 barrier spells out some success for the Rangers.

Head Coach/Coaches: Rob Grosso/ Peggy Heck
Last Year's Finish: 23rd- State Championship
Key Returners: Drew Rogers (So.), Kamden Lockwood (Jr.), Ben Morgan (So.)
Projected Top 7: Rogers, Lockwood, Morgan, Trevor Stutz (Jr.), Connor Joffe (Jr.), Blaine Dodds (So.), Wyatt Dohe (Sr.)
Key Additions: Wyatt Dohe (Sr., Tri Point [IL]), Kaden Parmley (Fr), Finely Cracco (Fr), Tad Martinson (Fr), Jacob Ciarrocchi (Fr), Carter Kent (Fr), Joe Osborn (Fr)
Unexpected Losses: Tyler Howard (Sr.)
Coach Grosso's Outlook: Young team just hitting its stride. Plenty yet to prove this season but I think this team has big days ahead of them in the coming years. Lots of experience already gained with our top runners already having several years of state meet runs. Great group of hard workers who are incredibly driven to be their best.

Head Coach/Coaches: Alex Clark/Debbie Ribbens
Last Year's Finish: 8th- State Championship
Key Returners: Luke Sikora (Sr.), Nicky Edwards-Levin (Jr.), Eli Ginsburg (Sr.)
Projected Top 7: Sikora, Edwards-Levin, Ginsburg, Zach Gin (So.), Gideon Mitchell (Jr.), Ethan Light (Sr.), Jeffrey Hong (So.)
Key Additions: None
Unexpected Losses: None
Coach Clark's Outlook: We are going to be lead all year by our top three guys, whose goals will be an All-State finish. They are coming off an all-state finish in the 4x800 which has motivated them to have a great summer of training so far. They all finished very well at the State meet last year, and are ready to put in the work to get even better. We will need some younger guys to step up in order to replace our seniors from last year, but we have some young potential that I believe are up to the challenge.

12. DeeMack (Deercreek)

Head Coach: Sam Ingram

Last Year's Finish: 6th- Elmwood Sectional

Key Returners: Colby Johnson (Sr.), John Blumeyer (Jr.), Kolin Wilkins (Jr.), Tyler Spurlock (Jr.), Ben Sanders (Jr.)

Projected Top 7: Johnson, Bluemeyer, Wilkins, Spurlock, Sanders, Tayte Albritton (So.), Dade Wilson (Sr.) Key Additions: Unknown

Unexpected Losses: Unknown

Milesplit's Outlook: The Chiefs have really made their presence in the 1A classification known the past few years with some great performances thrown down at the state meet. This year looks to be another one of those years. They have a top returner in the state in Colby Johnson who stood on the award stand last November. Johnson had a great track season that had him get all-state honors in the 4x800m when his team took 6th place as well as running the 1600m in Charleston. The backup behind him also seems to be solid with John Blumeyer looking to challenge the 16:00 barrier. Then they are extremely lucky to have some depth, which is hard to find on the 1A level with Kolin Wilkins and Tyler Spurlock who can both challenge 17:00 plus Ben Saunders and Tayte Albritton who can both go sub 17:30. This will be another great season for the Chiefs.

Head Coach: Steve Bland
Last Year's Finish: 11th- 2A Woodstock North Sectional
Key Returners: Mathew Olech (Jr.), Erik Richter (Sr.), Carson Welsh (So.)
Projected Top 7: Olech, Hayden Colclasure (Jr.), Richter, Josh Peterson (Sr.), Keegan Weidman (So.), Welsh, Daniel Winkleman (Fr.)
Key Additions: Daniel Winkleman (Fr.), David Peterson (Fr.)
Unexpected Losses: None
Coach Bland's Outlook: I think we will learn a lot about ourselves this season. Last year, being thrown into the deep water of 2A and being such a young team, taught us some valuable lessons.

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