Aho is the widest favorite among all three divisions in Illinois and the only undefeated runner among his own division in the state. Aho has five race wins that include a course record, a NLCC individual title, and a win at Peoria, and his third place finish at Palatine prove that he would also be among the title contenders in 3A. This past weekend, he ran 14:14
in a race where only 6 runners even broken 16 minutes. Aho is surely looking beyond the state meet this year to national competition.
Normal U-High has emerged as the #2 team in the state by a wide margin, a title achieved with the help of Jack Franklin's frontrunning. The Pioneers have been Peoria often this year, and Franklin has made his mark by finishing in the top 5 of each race and making significant strides each race (15:25 to 14:57 to 14:31). Franklin's lone win came at ACC's Charger Classic, but expect a couple more wins in regional and sectional competition before chasing Jack Aho for the team title.
Aho is certainly the best #2 runner in 2A and his improvement last year was a major reason the Rams walked away with a team title--yet Matt is much better than he was in 2015. His most impressive performance may have been at Palatine, where he turned in a top 10 finish. Aho finished second at NLCC behind his triplet brother and could run his way into a 1-2 performance for Central at state.
Flowers has run early and often, winning over 10 races in the past two seasons for Jersey and turning in impressive performances at Peoria, including a 2nd place finish at First to the Finish ahead of Jack Franklin, and a 14:45 at Peoria Central. He will defend his regional and sectional titles from last year, and looks sure to improve upon his 13th place at state last year.
Pajak has not had the same firepower in large invitational wins as Northern IL rival Jack Aho has, but Pajak IS a 2-time cross country all-stater and did finish 14th at Palatine. He has fictories at the Racine Horlick Rebel Invite and St. Charles North, and finished 3rd at the FVC conference champs.
Gebhardt's 14:46 was good enough to win the small school race at the Peoria Central invite by nine seconds. He has made wide strides since last year, when he ran 15:41 for 59th at the state meet.
Walmer is the pack leader for nationally ranked Mahomet-Seymour. He has run 15:05 for 3 full miles and has won three races (Lee Halberg, Charleston, East Peoria).
Richtman added a NIB-12 conference title to individual wins at Kaneland Eddington and the Harvest Fall Classic, as well as 5th place at First to the Finish. Richtman's sister Rachel is also ranked in the "Who's #1 list" at #23.
Gillum has a 14:55 to his name at Peoria Central, as well as third straight Mid Illini conference individual title. He has also finished seventh at First to the Finish and won the Galesburg Silver Streak Invite.
Schuckman is the best #2 runner in the state outside of Matthew Aho. His best on the year is 14:52 at the Peoria Invite on October 1 and he backed up teammate Jack Franklin with top 5 performances at the Corn Belt conference champs and at the ACC Charger Classic.
Good season so far with top 5 finishes in every one of them; clocked 15:05 at the Peoria Invite.
2nd at the NIB championship; won the Wheaton Academy Invite
5th at Peoria Invite is top mark on resume
Career best 15:09 is best performance at the Peoria Invite; top 20 finishes in all races this season
Top 15 performances in race this season; 4th place at NIB-12 is his performance thus far along with a 15:09 best
14:49 will be a performance to watch for later in season
The 95th place finish at Richard Spring Invite turned out to be a real bad race; dropped almost a minute at second Detweiller performance with a solid 15:12.
Cornbelt champion at 14:47 who is one the key factors in the Mahomet-Seymour express train
Ran a few performances like a 28th place finish at PND; 14:58 is personal best
Has held down the all important #3 spot for one of the state's top team; runs behind twins Jack and Matt Aho everyday in practice is a tremendous plus.
Rebounded from a 53rd place at the Richard Spring Invite to run 15:14 at the Peoria Invite
Outstanding tennis player in the spring who excels with cross country in the fall. Darrow's best performance is a 10th place finish at the Peoria Invitational.
Another outstanding Crystal Lake Central distance runner who ran 9:13 on the track; placed 13th in the state last year with a PB of 14:57.
One of the top freshmen in the state with a 15:19 mark.
Ran personal best 14:45 at the Cornbelt Conference.