Kroy York girls are geared up for RunningLane Championship

Kroy or the Lady Dukes of York will have an opportunity to strut their stuff on the national stage



Date: Saturday, December 4. 2021
Location: John Hunt Park; Huntsville, AL
Race times:
7:30 a.m. CST -- Community Race
8:00 a.m. CST -- Blue Boys Race
8:30 a.m. CST -- Bronze Girls Race
9:00 a.m. CST -- Bronze Boys Race
9:30 a.m. CST -- Silver Girls Race
10:00 a.m. CST -- Silver Boys Race
10:45 a.m. CST -- Girls Gold Championship Race
11:30 a.m. CST -- Boys Gold Championship Race
How to follow: WATCH LIVE; Social media ---> @milesplitil #RunningLane
Snap thoughts: This is going to be as good as traditional post-season cross country can get and athletes along with the great fans of the sport are going to benefit in a tremendous way. After a bevy of undercard races, the high-stakes Gold girls and boys championship races will crown the best individual and team champions in the country.

Among the top girls in the country that will be here are Riley Stewart (CO), Natalie Cook (TX), Dalia Frias (CA), Samantha McDonnell (CA), and Jenna Mulhern (PA). These MileSplit 50 stalwarts all have an opportunity to pop out a victory and certainly establish another personal best. Stewart and Cook are coming off of Eastbay XC Regional wins.

Locally, the nation will get an opportunity to see Ava Parekh (Chicago Latin), Mary Grace Hegberg (St. Viator), and Josephine Welin (Oak Park-River Forest). These seniors have been among the top of the heap of Illinois runners over the past full year. Parekh won the 2A state title and earned a spot to next weekend's Eastbay Nationals in San Diego. Parekh will certainly go and hand with the top girls and don't be surprised if she finishes inside the top 10. Hegberg and Welin placed 2nd (2A) and first (3A) in their respective state championship races. They will look to bounce back after less than stellar performances at the Eastbay MW Regional.

The team race seems to be a near-consensus Colorado sweep for one of the three top teams: #3 Niwot, #4 Arapahoe, and #5 Cherry Creek. Hopefully, York can come in a breakup and contain the "Rocky Mountain high."  The Lady Dukes are undefeated this season and have been completely unopposed whenever they have stepped on a cross country course. One of the deepest pack racing teams that IL has ever produced, the 3A title champs and NXN MW winners will not be intimidated. Naperville North is in the gold championship field as well. The Huskies placed 7th in the 3A state meet and later 4th at NXN MW. This may appear to be a rebuilding year for coach Dan Iverson's crew, the Huskies will be respectable.

The boys individual race could be Riley Hough (MI) vs. the Newbury Park California crew. Riley is rated numero uno in the country after an easy win at the Eastbay MW Regional last weekend. As he shifts to a warmer climate more suited to fast-paced sweepstakes the Californians desire. Newbury Park, which are odds-on favorites to win the team crown, have two sets of blazing-fast twins: Colin Sahlman and Aaron Sahlman... then Leo Young and Lex Young. If there is anyone who can dissolve this party, it would be Zane Bergen (CO). He has been outstanding all season long and his national qualifying performance at the Eastbay MW Regional (3rd) proves he is ready to tangle... senior Ryder James appears to be the top local runner to watch. He was not happy with his performance last weekend at the Eastbay MW Regional. The 1A champ from Paxton-Buckley-Loda feels that he is capable of earning All-American honors on Saturday.

Newbury Park is chasing history and could put a cherry on top of their cake with a win on Saturday. Niwot (CO), Cheyenne Mountain (CO), and American Fork (UT) are the teams to watch.