Lane's Hunter Whitney and Jones' Sam Berlinghof trading leading chores early on
It was an expected proverbial shootout among expected long-time rivals 3A #25 Jones College Prep and Lane Tech. For the first time in three seasons, the Chicago Public League would contest a normal championship clear of a strike or Covid-19 cancelations. If successful, it would be Jones' fourth consecutive championship. Both teams split undercard wins with frosh and open races.
The opening first half put early race leaders Hunter Whitney (Jr., Lane Tech), Sam Berlinghof (So., Jones Prep), Tedros Mekonen (Sr., Senn), and Alan Menninger (Sr., Jones Prep) into a tight squadron. The group hit the first mile in just 5:00. As the race turned back inside the open lagoon area of Washington Park's vast area, it was a sea of myrtle and gold for Lane and the blue over white for Jones. At this point, it was clearly a race for third in the team standings.
Whitney, Berlinghof, Mekonen, and Menninger were holding on around 9:58-10:00. Whitney put made his move and put on a surge that opened a gap to free himself from the group. It was decisive in terms of whether or not he could or would win the race. And with a quarter-mile to go, he was in charge and came home for the victory in a personal best for three miles in 15:04.
Berlinghof and Menninger placed second and third in 15:13 and 15:21 respectively. This placement would be crucial for the Eagle's chances of repeating. While Mekonen took fourth in 15:27 ahead of Muhiyadin Ali (Jr., Mather), Lane copped three of the next six spots to make things very interesting. But the Eagles put the scoring to a freeze at the 14th position and Alex Leonard who ran 16:03.
|1||Jones College Prep||39||2+3+9+11+14 (15+18)||0:49 1-5 Split | 15:41 Avg|
|2||Lane Tech High School||49||1+7+12+13+16 (23+37)||1:03 1-5 Split | 15:46 Avg|
|3||Payton High School||99||6+10+17+19+47 (48+53)||2:03 1-5 Split | 16:21 Avg|
|4||Mather High School||105||5+22+25+26+27 (65+89)||1:12 1-5 Split | 16:23 Avg|
|5||Northside Prep High School||155||24+28+30+31+42 (44+56)||0:52 1-5 Split | 16:50 Avg|