The Lyons Township High School boys cross-country team earned the fifth and final spot at the Class 3A Marist Sectional, advancing teams to the state meet on Saturday, Nov. 8 at Detweiller Park in Peoria. The Lions scored 120 points to finish ahead of Oswego (154 points) to punch their ticket to Peoria.

Junior Connor Madell led the way for LTHS with a team-best time of 14 minutes, 56 seconds, which placed him ninth overall at Marist. Seniors Vince Arata finished 20th with a time of 15:08 and Zach Szczesniak came in 30th at 15:26. The rest of the LTHS lineup included Matt Begeman (30th/15:26), Vince Zona (38th/15:35), Vance Smith (40th/15:36) and Alex Lima (62nd/15:57).

Along with LTHS, sectional champion Sandburg (39 points) which placed all five of its runners in the top 11, Hinsdale Central (94 points), Neuqua Valley (96 points) and Downers Grove North (111 points) advance to state.

Downers Grove North senior Ryan Clevenger won the Marist Sectional at Midlothian Meadows by posting a time of 14:33.

LTHS girls cross country

Junior Vanessa Flaherty finished 14th with a time of 17:59 as the Lions’ only state qualifier. LTHS finished eighth in the team standings with 211 points. Conference rival Hinsdale Central won the sectional championship with a score of 50.

Lockport (82), Downers Grove North (112), Neuqua Valley (124) and Downers Grove South (158) also move on to compete in Peoria.

RBHS boys cross country

The Bulldogs fell just short of qualifying for the Class 2A state meet, finishing sixth at the Wheaton Academy Sectional with 171 points. St. Francis scored 167 points to edge RBHS for the final spot.

Senior Wayne Morrelly will be the Bulldogs’ lone state qualifier. He recorded a time of 15:53 to finish 15th, while Illiana Christian’s Nick Fiene claimed the sectional’s individual title by crossing the finish line at 15:02.

Illiana Christian took top honors at the sectional with a score of 59, followed by runner-up Hinsdale South (79), Wheaton Academy (81) and Glenbard South (149).

Nazareth, which finished 12th with 333 points, also qualified one runner for state in senior Johnny Bareis (17th/15:59).

RBHS girls cross country

Freshman Hailey Jurgens ran a time of 18:56 for 18th place in her sectional debut at Wheaton Academy. The promising Jurgens will compete at state, while the Bulldogs fell short of their state bid with a seventh-place finish at the sectional.

Led by Top 20 finishers, sophomore Claire Ramsey (9th/18:35), senior Emily Eddins (16th/18:57) and junior Colleen Cavanaugh (20th/19:14), Nazareth finished third. Lemont won the Wheaton Academy Sectional with a score of 45.

Fenwick girls cross country

Led by state title contender Olivia Ryan, the Friars finished fourth at the Class 3A Niles West Sectional. Ryan came in fourth in the individual results as well with a time of 17:19. Freshman Anne Mannion (13th/18:10) and sophomore Nicole Finn (27th/18:30) turned in solid runs.

Sarah Winkiel, Margaret O’Brien, Mary Grace Babbo and Maddie Bilbo comprise the rest of the Friars’ state-bound squad.

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Marty Farmer

The Illinois Press Association recently honored Marty with the 1st & 2nd Place Awards for Best Sports Feature for his article He's in an Oak Park state of mind: Former OPRF star Iman Shumpert returns...