Lyons’ Daemicke gains confidence
Updated: September 19, 2011 8:25PM
Saturday’s meet in Peoria wasn’t just a possible preview of the state meet, but it gave a team such as Lyons an opportunity to see where it stands in the West Suburban Silver.
Lyons finished fifth (255) in Peoria Notre Dame’s Spring Invitational at Detweiller Park, site of the Class 3A state meet Nov. 5.
Glenbard West (213) was fourth and York (271) was sixth in the 57-team meet.
Lyons’ top runner was senior Lisa Gordon (18:02), who finished 32nd. While Glenbard West and York had each of its top two runners finish in the top 18, Lyons used a pack approach to gain points.
Senior Alex Daemicke of Indian Head Park has emerged as LT’s No. 2 runner, finishing behind Gordon each time in Lyons’ first three major meets of the season. Gordon has been the first finisher for Lyons at its own invitational Sept. 3 and at Reavis Sept. 10.
Daemicke was third at LT, fourth at Reavis and 38th (18:09) at Peoria.
For LT’s efforts, the team received the last of five available trophies at the Spring Invite.
“I think we were all happy with how we all performed,” Daemicke said. “We were up against good competition. In our dual meet against York (Sept. 15), we lost by two points. We came back to beat them (at Peoria).”
Daemicke ran Detweiller Park for the fourth time in her career and ran a personal-record on Saturday in a day marked by perfect weather for cross country runners.
Lyons’ other scorers were Haley Prokaski (50th, 18:20), Lexy Rudofski (56th, 18:25) and Juliet Lusson (80th, 18:45).
“My previous P.R. was 18:24 at state last year,” Daemicke said. “Overall, our team is trying to work on pack running. So much of it is adrenaline going on, especially for the big meets.”
Lyons’ next major meet is the Palatine Invitational at 9 a.m. Saturday at Deer Grove East. That meet features the host Pirates, who placed second at Peoria behind third-place Tess Wasowicz (17:01) and seventh place Jessica Lincoln (17:24). Glenbard West’s top runner at Peoria was Madeline Perez (17:02), who was fourth.
Lyons is planning on making a return trip to Peoria after finishing 17th at the state meet. Lyons has been to the State meet for 13 consecutive years.
“I have really been excited about this season,” Daemicke said. “It started in June with our summer team program. The new coach (Stetson Steele) has been awesome.”
Only a few things have changed for Lyons under Steele, Under former coach Julie Metz, the team’s biggest workout day was Monday. Now it’s Tuesday.
Steele has kept the tradition of dividing workouts by Groups and the team pasta parties each Friday night. Gordon and Daemicke belong to Group 1, which could also include top sophomores and JV runners. The training for Group 1 differs from other groups, such as Group 4. Because the entire program splits in Groups, the weekly pasta party is one of the few times everyone can get together and see each other. One Group could have as many as 20 girls.
“So many of us come together,” Daemicke said.