Boys Cross Country: Plainfield South dissatisfied with second at Lockport RegionalStart of the boys IHSA Lockport 3A Regionals cross country race held at Dellwood Park Lockport, Illinois on Saturday, October 20, 2012. | Larry Kane~For Sun-Times Media
Updated: October 20, 2012 9:42PM
Proof that the bar is set high for Plainfield South came Saturday when the Southwest Prairie Conference champion Cougars weren’t satisfied with a second-place finish to Neuqua Valley in the competitive Class 3A Lockport Regional.
“The guys came out and battled, but we came here with the goal to be regional champions and we came up short,” Plainfield South coach Jason Crowe said. “Our guys have a lot of respect for the Neuqua Valley program. It’s a great program, but that’s where our guys want to be.”
Neuqua Valley, third in last year’s state meet, scored 45 points to edge Plainfield South (50) in the 10-team regional at Dellwood Park. Fourth-place Plainfield East (74), fifth-place Lockport (123) and seventh-place Bolingbrook (196) also advanced to Saturday’s Marist Sectional.
Plainfield South’s first five runners finished in the top 22, led by junior Dan Lathrop (3rd, 16 minutes, 7 seconds).
“I did all right. I went out a little bit fast,” Lathrop said. “Going into next week we’ll use this as a motivation and come back harder.”
Plainfield South’s other scorers were Jake Fitzgerald (7th, 16:21), Cody Dyer (8th, 16:29), Misael Tobias (10th, 16:30) and Frank Pasqua (22nd, 17:08).
“If you look at their faces now, they’re disappointed,” Crowe said. “They don’t just want to come in second place. They want to be champions.”
Plainfield East sophomore Joseph Suarez was close to being a regional champion, taking second (16:01) to Oswego senior Caleb Beck (15:53).
“It was awesome. I really didn’t think I would get this,” Suarez said. “I was assuming they were going to take it out really fast. They took it out at an easy pace, which I actually enjoyed.
“I think I did excellent, split after split, nothing too crazy. I was thinking I was going to get top five, but sticking with Caleb, he’s so crazy fast. But next week is going to be pretty hard.”
Also scoring for Plainfield East were Collin Warke (13th), Cody Hughes (14th), Jake Runnion (15th) and Harris Jordan (30th).
Lockport qualified behind the efforts of Will Giroux (12th), Jared Bitters (23rd), Kristian Hernandez (27th), Chris Fojtik (29th) and Gabe Davalos (32nd).
Bolingbrook’s qualifying team was Johnathan Cook (31st), Jerome Davis (34th), Tim Pape (39th), Bjorn Shroda (45th) and Kokeith Perry (47th).
Plainfield Central’s John Principato (28th) was the top individual qualifier, followed by Romeoville’s Mike Samuelson (33rd) and Plainfield North’s Tanner Thurman (36th).