Edwardsville's girls cross country team is working hard this week in preparation for what Coach George Patrylak hopes is a blazing conclusion for their season.

Get The Latest News!

Don't miss our top stories and need-to-know news everyday in your inbox.

He has said repeatedly that this year’s squad has more depth than any other girls team he has coached and he hopes to see the girls shine this Saturday at state at Peoria’s Detwiler Park.

Edwardsville finished fifth with 125 points, the last team qualifying spot at the Class 3A Normal Community Sectional. The top five teams and top seven individuals not on advancing teams moved on to next week's state appearance.

Minooka won the team title with 20 points, easily outscoring second-place New Lenox Lincoln-Way Central, who was second at 113 points. O'Fallon and Frankfort Lincoln-Way East tied for third with 116 points, followed by the Tigers.

Maddie Miller was the top Tiger runner in 18:45, good for 11th place, followed by Rachel Schonecker (18:55.9), Colleen Corkery (19:22.9), Kiara Delgado (19:28.4) and Julianna Determan (19:36.5) to complete the scoring. Melissa Spencer (19:37.9) and Victoria Vegher (19:45.5) also ran for the Tigers on the day.

“We did enough to get out of the sectional to state and we finished fifth, only 13 points out of second,” Edwardsville cross country coach Partylak said. “If we would have ran what we were capable of doing, we should have been in second place this past Saturday, but hopefully we will run to our potential at state this weekend in Peoria.”

No other area girls qualified for the state meet; Granite City was represented by Alyssa Comer (20:35), Kori Nesbit (21:46.5) and Tara Khousana (22:45.9), while Alton's Tayton Kuebil ran a 24:09.4.

Article continues after sponsor message

On the boys’ side, Edwardsville failed to advance to the state meet, finishing in eighth place with a score of 234. Granite City also did not advance as a team, taking 13th with 339 points, but freshman Andrew O'Keefe took the final individual state qualifying spot with a time of 16:07.9, good for 19th place.

Minooka also won the boys title with 93 points, followed by O'Fallon (101), Lansing Illiana Christian (107), Frankfort Lincoln-Way North (118) and Joliet Central (128).

Dan Powell led the way for the Tigers with a time of 16:28.2, with Roland Prenzler (16:31.7), Franky Romano, Max Hartmann (both 16:41.9) and Jacob Schoenthal (17:04.4) also figuring in the scoring; Sam McCormick (17:09.2) and Jonah Durbin (17:38.4) ran for EHS.

Besides Andrew O'Keefe, the Warriors' Will O'Keefe (16:13.6), Jake Roustio (17:27.6), Leo Nikonowicz (17:30) and Kariem Ali (18:47) also figured in the scoring, with Eriberto Neri (18:50.4) and Aiden Sampson (19:24.5) also taking part.

“Unfortunately, we had one of our worst races of the season at worst time for the boys,” he said. “If you look at beginning of year, and looking over the previews I sent and to the media, we were rebuilding this year. I didn’t feel we had a chance to make it to state, but as the season progressed I did feel we were right there. We didn’t even have Franky Romano’s name as somebody to watch as one of runners before the season started. I think the future looks very bright for this group of boys.”

Alton was represented by four individuals – Arie Macias (16:16.5), Sam Gentelin (17:31.2), Kelvin Cummings (17:44.6) and Jett Durr (17.48.7); none advanced to the state meet.

Minooka's Soren Knudsen (15:17.9) and Ashley Tutt (17:20.1) were the individual champions on the day.

Alton's Arie Macias is slightly ahead of Edwardsville's Dan Powell in a recent race.

More like this:

Mar 8, 2024 - Cougars Eliminated from OVC Tournament

Nov 6, 2023 - Rybak Finishes Sixth, Griffins Eighth In Class 1A, Tigers Have Best Finish In Team History With 11th Place At Girls State Cross Country Meet

Oct 30, 2023 - Edwardsville Advances To State In Granite City 3A Girls Cross Country Sectional, Redbirds, Warriors Also Compete

Nov 6, 2023 - Saturday Sports Roundup: Tigers Clip Casey-Westfield, East Side Wins Again, Plus Other Results

6 days ago - Local Gymnast Talia Omotola Shines, Takes Home State Gold