Intern Jamie Nicholson breaks down the girls' race like no one can
Unexpected snow on Thursday and a last-minute decision allowing all Chicago Public Schools to run sectionals provided lots of uncertainty and chatter at the Lake Park Sectional. However, the strongest teams and individuals pushed through despite the distractions and adverse course conditions to show their strength this weekend at arguably the most difficult sectional in the state.
#9 Wheaton-Warrenville South came in as the predicted winner after a strong season led by junior Samantha Poglitsch and a solid supporting cast behind her. However, #8 Glenbard West on the strength of superstar senior Katelynne Hart has the advantage of her always low stick presence. If she could get another top-notch performance out of her sophomore teammates Audrey Allman and Delaney Engel, they would be hard to beat. Hart, of course, was able to keep up her end of the bargain and Allman and Engel These two teams battled it out clear of the other three teams who were trying to punch their tickets to Peoria.
York battled WSC Silver foe Oak Park-River Forest in taking third. Both squads lack a true front runner but they have strong packs. OPRF showed strong fortitude after essentially running by themselves last weekend at the Lincoln Park Regional, which was void of teams due to the CPS teacher's strike.
#20 New Trier which was surprised by an upstart and newly minted #19 Loyola Academy last weekend at the Niles West Regional, made sure that it would not happen again. The Trevians were able to tighten up their scorers and put them as well as their top seven in front of the Ramblers team in amassing 104 points.
|1||Glenbard West High School||53||1+3+4+21+24 (42+70)||2:36 1-5 Split | 18:01 Avg|
|2||Wheaton Warrenville South High School||65||2+7+14+20+22 (28+45)||1:55 1-5 Split | 18:23 Avg|
|3||York High School||91||10+12+13+27+29 (33+34)||0:48 1-5 Split | 18:51 Avg|
|4||Oak Park-River Forest||99||5+6+16+32+40 (50+62)||1:43 1-5 Split | 18:40 Avg|
|5||New Trier High School||104||11+19+23+25+26 (41+49)||0:41 1-5 Split | 18:59 Avg|
It has been a busy and pleasantly distracting week for Hart, who first publicly announced her college commitment. After announcing that she would be attending the University of Michigan in the fall, it was off to blowing 18 candles off her birthday cake prior to the meet. The prestigious occasion invoked a smile and chuckle: "I'm finally legal." That would be the only joke and laughter bestowed on her opponents as Hart let loose with a sizzling first mile in 5:22 before settling into her comfort zone for the remainder of the race. Hart would cruise home in a sectional best 16:34- well ahead of Poglitsch who ran a very good 17:12 on a mud slicked course. A chase pack later followed which featured four other sub 18:00 performers. CPS state hopeful senior Sydney Partyka from Taft gutted out a strong finish to take 18th in 18:49. She would be the fifth of seven qualifying spots to state.
|1||Katelynne Hart||12||Glenbard West High School||16:34.60||1|
|2||Samantha Poglitsch||11||Wheaton Warrenville South High School||17:12.50||2|
|3||Audrey Allman||10||Glenbard West High School||17:36.50||3|
|4||Delaney Engel||10||Glenbard West High School||17:48.70||4|
|5||Nora Wollen||11||Oak Park-River Forest||17:49.70||5|
|6||Josephine Welin||10||Oak Park-River Forest||17:51.30||6|
|7||Kaitlyn Nenninger||12||Wheaton Warrenville South High School||18:04.90||7|
|8||Hope Leman||11||Evanston Township High School||18:05.80||8|
|9||Ellie Grammas||9||Loyola Academy||18:10.80||9|
|10||Katelyn Winton||10||York High School||18:27.90||10|
The boys' race was more of a pressure-packed chess match compared to the girls speed gate affair. For one, the course was tremendously chewed up and the ground thawed a bit to a slight rise in the mercury. Secondly, #2 Wheaton-Warrenville South beat #3 York in last weekend's regional. The ball was essentially in the Duke's court and so often they had been inconsistent in performing at the highest level of competition this season.
It turned out to be one of the best sectional meets hosted by the Lancers athletic department. York ended up taking the title placing all five runners within the top 15 for a total score of 40 points. The Tigers ran strong but could not overcome the 18-second scoring split by the Dukesters. #5 New Trier made a few lineup changes from last weekend's disappointing regional performance to beat CSL Conference foe #7 Maine South. To no fault of their own, #22 Wheaton North qualified for the state meet over Loyola Academy out by a mere three points.
|1||York High School||40||3+4+6+12+15 (21+75)||0:18 1-5 Split | 15:27 Avg|
|2||Wheaton Warrenville South High School||62||1+11+14+17+19 (22+71)||0:40 1-5 Split | 15:33 Avg|
|3||New Trier High School||79||5+10+16+23+25 (34+53)||0:31 1-5 Split | 15:40 Avg|
|4||Maine South High School||98||2+9+24+28+35 (54+84)||0:50 1-5 Split | 15:43 Avg|
|5||Wheaton North High School||164||27+29+31+38+39 (40+63)||0:12 1-5 Split | 16:03 Avg|
The race to the tape was supposed to be between seniors William Hauenstein of Wheaton Warrenville South and Joey Kasch of Maine South. Hauenstein stayed low key for the first mile which was just past 5:00. As the large pack was making its tour a second time through the fan-friendly course, Hauenstein made a bold move and surged away from the group and opened daylight. No one seemed interested in chasing him down so he won comfortably with a time won of 15:06. Kasch pulled away from Klysh inside of the final mile to take second in 15:13. Senior Daniel Klysh of York took third with a time of 15:21 to lead York. The top individual qualifier was sophomore Spencer Werner of Loyola, who took 7th place overall. A final silver lining in all of the chaos and madness was three Chicago Jones Prep runners earning spots to the state championship. Seniors Anthony Maida and Ryan Desantis along with junior Aaron Hou were the third, fifth, and sixth individual qualifiers.
|1||William Hauenstein||12||Wheaton Warrenville South High School||15:06.20||1|
|2||Joey Kasch||12||Maine South High School||15:13.50||2|
|3||Daniel Klysh||12||York High School||15:21.50||3|
|4||Ethan Kern||12||York High School||15:21.90||4|
|5||Nick Falk||10||New Trier High School||15:22.40||5|
|6||Colin Hill||11||York High School||15:22.50||6|
|7||Spencer Werner||10||Loyola Academy||15:24.70||7|
|8||Pierce Cousins||11||Glenbard West High School||15:28.70||8|
|9||Adam Christopher||12||Maine South High School||15:29.80||9|
|10||Charlie Siebert||11||New Trier High School||15:30.10||10|