ResAt the beginning of this season, you may have noticed that there was originally not a meet this past Saturday. However, once we discovered that one of our meets, the North Side/South Side Challenge, would be moved to the same date as the Twilight Invitational at Naperville North, we needed to add a meet to comply with the six meet minimum from the IHSA. Luckily for us, Aurora Central Catholic allowed us to join their meet and therefore insure that we would be eligible for team honors at the end of the season.
For this meet, the coaching staff decided to enter a Varsity team that was comprised of some of our top runners, but also some of our athletes that showed great improvement or had a competitive race at the Peoria Notre Dame Invitational.
When the gun went off, our team charged to the front of the pack, knowing that the path would narrow after only about 200 meters. By the time that we saw the team again as they exited the forest just after the mile, our top pack had a commanding presence at the front of the race. The race would then disappear from view as the runners circled the lake toward the finish.
When the leaders emerged, we saw Patrick Wolak in second place kicking with everything that he had. He overtook the leader in the last 50 meters to win the individual title in a time of 14:54.5. Patrick was followed by Aidan Livingston (15:00.4) and Austin Kinne (15:03.6), placing 4th and 5th respectively. When our next two runners, Caleb Ferguson (15:12.3) and Josh Mollway (15:16.9), finished 13th and 16th, it was clear to everyone that Neuqua Valley had dominated the meet and outscored second place 39-151. Results
Our next five runners all finished in the top half of the race with Matt Milostan (15:19.2) taking 18th place, Wylie Anderson (15:35.2) taking 24th, Peter O’Neil (15:45.5) taking 29th, Josh Patel (15:48.7) taking 32nd and Jeremy Hayhurst (16:19.2) taking 65th. Amazingly, if you scored these runners as our team, they would have taken 4th place out of 17 teams!
As the raced ended, the conversations from the crowd were interesting. People were talking about how we placed in Peoria and how impressive the team was. It came as quite a shock to many when they learned that this was not all of our top runners. The beauty of this team is that when we put a team on the line, we know that they will all compete to the best of their ability. On that note, special mention needs to go to Senior Peter O’Neil, the fan favorite, Junior Josh Patel and Junior Jeremy Hayhurst, who were challenged to compete at the top Varsity level and answered in respectable fashion.