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2009 IESA State Cross-Country Meet Produces Perfect Performances

Mt. Zion's McKayla Harder ended a perfect season with a first place finish in the Class AA girls race, and Chatham Glenwood Coach Sue Zartler's cross-country coaching career ended perfectly Saturday in the IESA State Cross-Country Meet at Maxwell Park.

On a day that featured some of the closest competition for the team titles in IESA cross-country history, Chatham Glenwood's girls and boys teams both won the Class AA events for retiring Coach Zartler. The girls team took first place for the third straight year, but this time it was by a mere point over Normal Parkside, 90-91. The boys team took its title with a nine-point win over New Lenox Martino.

Mt. Zion's Harder led all the way over the 3200-meter course and eased up in the final meters to hold off Kelsey Schrader of DeKalb Clinton Rosette for the individual win. Harder was timed in 11:40 and Schrader was second in 11:44. Harder won every race she was in 2009, including wins in the rugged Normal Parkside Invitational, the Dunlap Invitational at Detweiller Park in Peoria, and the East Peoria Central Invitational before Saturday's triumph. Finishing third was Andrea Gordon of Normal Parkside in 11:46. Also bettering the 12-minute mark were fourth place finisher Haley Swords of Freeport in 11:54 and Meredith Smith of Wilmette JHS in 11:57. Harder, Gordon and Smith are all seventh graders. The other two are in eighth grade.

Chatham Glenwood's scoring team places in the Class AA girls race were 6-7-24-25-28. The team scoring places for Normal Parkside were 2-9-11-34-35.

Top finishers for Chatham Glenwood in the girls race was Taylor Mueller and Kirsten Aydt in 12:05. Computer chip scoring breaks down all times to the thousandth of a second and that is how the runners are placed. Mueller was scored eighth overall and sixth in the team scoring. Aydt was scored ninth overall and seventh in team scoring. The remaining three scoring runners for Chatham Glenwood were Cassady Garner at 12:27, Kyra Webster in 12:28 and Maggie Juhlin in 12:31. Aydt is the only eighth grader among the five scoring runners. Garner and Webster are sixth graders, Mueller and Juhlin are in seventh grade.

Andrea Gordon led Normal Parkside with the No. 2 team scoring finish. Ashley Lafayette was No. 9 in 12:09, Christy Hulett No. 11 in 12:12, Brea Fairley No. 34 in 12:38 and Brea Hines No. 35 in 12:39.

Noah Johnson was the top finisher for the Chatham Glenwood boys team. He was fifth overall and No. 4 in team scoring in 10:57. John Schroll was seventh overall and No. 6 in team scoring in 10:58. Michael Giovannelli was No. 12 in team scoring in 11:08, Trevor Dowell was No. 21 in 11:22 and Isaac Albracht was No. 32 in 11:33.

Chatham Glenwood's team places of 4-6-12-21-32 (75) stood up against the 1-13-17-18-35 (84) team scoring for New Lenox Martino. The team title was the second for the boys since 2000, the other coming in 2002.

Under Coach Sue Zartler since 2000, her girls teams finished first 3 times (2007-08-09), second once (2006), third 3 times (2001-04-05) and fourth once (2000). The boys teams finished first twice (2002-09), second twice (2003-08) and fourth once (2006).

Simon Thorpe of Dixon Reagan won the Class AA boys race storming to the win in a time of 10:39. Runner-up Joe Nelson of New Lenox Martino ran 10:48 as did third place Peter Cotsirilos of Wilmette JHS. Computer chip scoring breaks down all times to the thousandth of a second and that is how the runners are placed.

Four other runners in the Class AA boys race bettered eleven minutes. They were Will Giroux of Homer Glen Homer in 10:56, Chatham Glenwood's Johnson in 10:57, Zach Lyons of Belvidere Central in 10:58, and Chatham Glenwood's John Schroll in 10:58.

Liberty beat Dunlap Valley by twenty-six points (110-136) to win the Class A girls team title for the second year in a row, while Petersburg PORTA JHS won the Class A boys team title with 155 points and an 18-point margin over runner-up Stanford Olympia.

Sixth grader Jackie Graham of Liberty won the Class A girls individual race in a time of 11:52. She beat second place eighth grader Olivia Rohr of Springfield Christian by 10 seconds. Third was seventh grader Amanda Thate of Downers Grove Lakeview in 12:06.

Graham was not the only sixth grader who helped pave the way for the team title. Sixth grader Adrian Siebers finished 10th overall and No. 6 in team scoring in 12:32 and sixth grader Katie Cook was 24th overall and No. 17 in team scoring. The other team scorers for Liberty were seventh grader Olivia Hanzel at No. 33 in team scoring in 13:15 and eighth grader Cassie Clingling No. 53 in 13:36.

Liberty's team scoring of 1-6-17-33-53 was just twenty-six points better than the pack running of Dunlap Valley MS that produced team scoring of 2-3-15-50-66.

Leading the way for Dunlap Valley was Abby Jockisch in 12:20. The others were Kaylie Noll in 12:26, Pauline Istas in 12:40, Allison Verville in 13:31, Danielle Snarr in 13:46 and Chloe Gunn in 13:51. Noll, Snarr and Kolb are eighth graders. The others are in seventh grade.

Seth Trobaugh of Clifton Nash won the Class A boys race in a time of 10:56. John Leverenz of Danville St. Paul was second in 11:03 and third went to Nick Groeper of Elmwood in 11:06.

Petersburg PORTA JHS got team scoring places of 10-19-24-50-52 for its total of 155 points. Runner-up Stanford Olympia had 173 points.

Nate Hopper was the leading Petersburg PORTA JHS runner finishing No. 17 overall in a time of 11:27. The other scoring runners were Zavier Dahl in 11:42, Mitch Muller in 11:45, Matt Muller in 12:07 and Caleb Jennings in 12:09.

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