Cross Country: Yorkville boys, girls first at Blackhawk Stampede

Story Image Oswego East's Andrea Holm runs during the West Aurora Stampede at Marmion Academy in Aurora on Saturday, Oct. 6, 2012. | Mike Mantucca ~ For Sun-Times Media
Story Image

Updated: October 6, 2012 10:14PM

After taking last weekend off, Yorkville returned to its dominating ways at the Blackhawk Stampede Saturday, placing four runners in the top 10 of both the boys and girls races and rolling to their respective titles.

With the state series beginning in two weeks, the girls posted a team score of 40 points to outdistance Fremd (69) and Downers Grove North (79), while the boys had 29 points to defeat Fremd (95 points) and host West Aurora (99).

“We wanted to come out this week and have a good race,” said Yorkville coach Chris Muth. “There are a lot of talented schools here. Hopefully that sets the tone for the next four weeks (through state).”

Youth ruled in the girls race, as seven of the top 10 runners were underclassmen. Yorkville freshman Skyler Bollinger led the way for the defending Class 2A state champion Foxes as she won the 3.1-mile race on the Marmion course in a time of 18 minutes, 11 seconds. Classmate Summer Pierson followed her across the line in fifth in 18:50, while fellow freshman Erin Reynolds was seventh in 18:54 and junior Casey Kramer eighth in 19:03.

Batavia freshman Dakota Roman (6th, 18:52) and West Aurora senior Claire Loran (10th, 19:10) were other local top-10 finishers.

“I felt really good when I was running,” Bollinger said. “It was a great race for us, and we were excited to get back out there and race (after the week off).”

Oswego East placed fifth among the 16 teams with 164 points, Batavia (224) was seventh and host West Aurora was 11th with 303 points. Rosary was 12th with 312 points and Geneva was 16th with 374.

The boys race was like déjà vu for the competition as the Foxes took the top three spots and four of the top nine. Sophomore Jake Hoffert pulled away for the win in 15:41, brother Luke was second in 15:46 and Zak Arcara was right behind in 15:47. Eric Baker was ninth for the Foxes in 16:11. All of Yorkville’s seven runners finished 21st or better and had a separation of just 51 seconds.

“I love (running) in this weather,” Jake Hoffert said of the cool, breezy conditions. “We’ve been training so hard and working on finishing at the end, and we are starting to put that together.”

Omar Gomez finished in fourth place for West with a time of 15:56 to lead the runner-up effort for the Blackhawks, and Robert Herrera was 13th in 16:23.

“I thought the boys ran one their best team races of the season,” said West coach Matt Sinnott. “I was pleased no matter what the outcome. Omar has been running tough up front, but what is great is that right behind him is a group that is getting closer and closer.”

Marmion finished eighth with 220 points and Waubonsie Valley (259) was ninth. Oswego East (11th, 289 points), Batavia (14th, 372) and Geneva (16th, 490) rounded out the local teams in the 16-team field.

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