Coach:Jamie Klotz (13th year)
Last year: 6th at Schaumburg Sectional, Libertyville Regional champion, 5th in MSL.
Key losses: Yegor Krutikov.
Top returning runners: Steven Salvano ( sr.), Daron Bedian (sr.), Ryan Eischen (sr.), Jake Wenzel (jr.), Eli Hinkle (jr.), Montana Nimmerfroh (jr.), Tripp Wallner (jr.), Kevin Salvano (so.), Tom Cleary (so.).
Top newcomer: Arturo Bautista (fr.).
Outlook: Steven Salvano will set the tone for this team. The senior finished ninth in Class 3A last season, second in the MSL, and third at the Schaumburg sectional in a break-out season. The Bison came on strong late last season with the infusion young talent including Kevin Salvano and Cleary. Kevin Salvano (19th) made all-conference last year and is running strong early cementing the No. 2 spot Cleary , Wenzel, and Hinkle are packing it together and helped to pace BG to a regional championship. Hinkle won the frosh/soph MSL title and will contribute to a Bison team that will be in the hunt in the tough MSL. Bautista has shown a lot of promise and has been running up top. Two years ago BG had its best finish at state, taking 5th in Class 3A; the Bisons are gearing up for another big year.
Coach: David Dompke (sixth year)
Last year: 11th in MSL.
Top returning runners: Joey Kraemer (sr.), Mike Frintner (sr.), Zach Pindras (sr.), Ryan Hennessy (sr.), Sam Marra.
Top newcomers: Mike Banasik, Sean Frintner, Campbell Kraemer.
Outlook: Frinter and Kraemer return to pace Elk Grove. Pindras and Hennessy will also add experience to the Grens attack.
Coach: Jay Renaud (third year)
Last year: 19th in Class 3A, third at Schaumburg Sectional, Hoffman Regional champion, third in MSL, MSL East division champions.
Key losses: Robert Somary, Ryan Kearns.
Top returning runners: David Rodriguez (jr.), Andy Philipose (sr.), Jack O'Neil (sr.), Grant Von Der Lippe (jr.), Matt Dini (sr.), Matt Stadnicki (sr.), Brendan Cunningham (sr.), Kevin Ziegenhorn (jr.), Josh Plischke (jr.).
Top newcomers: Erick DeLoera (sr.), Jacob Krupa, Sam Svienty, Andrew Hyndman, Andrew Heidorn.
Outlook: Palatine has won 10 consecutive MSL titles. Hersey is looking to end that streak and the Huskies definitely have the pieces. Rodriquez and Philipose give Hersey a potent 1-2 punch up front and are potential all-state runners. DeLoera, who has returned after a season of playing soccer, has pressured the top two and is a solid No. 3. O'Neil and Von Der Lippe have put their mark on the 4-5 spots. The Huskies will have six runners contending for the final two spots. This team not only has the talent to win the MSL, but also will be in the trophy hunt in Class 3A come November. The pieces are in place for a memorable season for the Huskies.
Coach: Mike Stokes (22nd year).
Last year: 4th in MSL.
Key losses: Quentin Shaffer (2nd in Class 3A), Michael Leet.
Top returning runners: Max Daleiden (sr.), Blake Hallman (sr.), Max Gonzalez (sr.), Ben Pederson (sr.), Will Lussenhop (sr.), Mike Anderson (jr.).
Top newcomers: Alec Heyde (so.).
Outlook: Prospect took a big hit with the loss of Schaffer who won the MSL title and Schaumburg sectional title and finished the season by taking second in Class 3A. The Knights also lost Leet, who made all-state in 2011 and finished 11th in the MSL last season. It remains to be seen who will step up in the No. 1 position, although Anderson (21st) made all-conference, and Daleiden also has the talent. Lussenhop and Hallman contributed to last year squad and will be counted on again this year. Heyde has come on strong and is looking to run in the top five this season.
Coach: Frank Schweda (fifth year).
Last year: 20th at Schaumburg sectional, 10th in MSL.
Key losses: Alex Duman.
Top returning runners: Aaron Sanchez (sr.), Tim Howley (jr.), Ark Wrobel (sr.), Jack Davis (sr.), Colin Piscitello (jr.),.
Top newcomers: George Cyboran (fr.), John Gerardi (fr.), Joe Hume (fr.), Jon Windhorst (so.).
Outlook: Sanchez, Howley, and Wrobel return for Rolling Meadows and will lead a tight front pack. The Mustangs trio will set the tone for the team that got a boost with some talented incoming freshman. Gerardi could contribute quickly for the Meadows. Piscitello will be running in the top five for Meadows.
Coach: Tom Polak (14th year).
Last year: 12th in the MSL.
Key losses: Zigi Jasiunas, Alfonso Figueroa.
Top returning runners: Edwin Arteaga (sr.), Cole Dammeier (jr.), Edwin Hernandez (jr.), Steven Abraham (jr.), Drew Schwartz, Brian Hernandez (jr.), Justin Loquercio (so.).
Top newcomers: Joe Swiech, Matt Hoffman, David Vergel.
Outlook: Polak fielded a very young Wheeling team last season and is hoping the experience pays off for the Wildcats this season. Look for the junior duo of Dammeier and Loquercio to pace the Wildcats this season.
Coach: Ty Gorman (11th year).
Last year: 8th in Class 3A, 2nd at Schaumburg sectional, 2nd in MSL.
Key losses: Ryan Burgoon (12th in Class 3A), Mike Rappleye, Kerry Frank.
Top returning runners: Konrad Eiring (jr.), Jake Herb (sr.), Ryan Perkins (sr.), Adam Phillips (sr.), Pitcher Seagrist (sr.)
Top newcomers: Kurtis Monahan (jr.), Kyle Monahan (jr.).
Outlook: Barrington lost three of its top five runners, including all-state runner Burgoon(12th), from the top finishing MSL school at the state meet. But don't look for the Broncos to miss a beat. Eiring is running No. 1, but Herb has been close. The duo will give the Broncos a lift up front. Perkins, Phillips, and Seagrist are tight 3-5 runners, giving the Broncos a solid core. Phillips, Perkins, and Eiring were members of the 3,200 relay team that captured the Class 3A title in track and field, and they will be looking to carry that championship swagger to the cross country courses this season. Look for the Broncos to once again be in the hunt for an MSL title and a top 10 finish at the state meet.
Coach: John Powers (14th year).
Last year: 7th in MSL.
Key losses: Joe Sulentic, Matt Andress
Top returning runners: Zach Dale (jr.), Rob Smolik (sr.), Shujaat Sultan (jr.), James Janczy (jr.), James Pesce (sr.).
Top newcomers: Chris Serrano (soph.), Joel Almodovar (jr.), Hugh Hutchison (sr.), Jack Hutchison (sr.).
Outlook: Dale will lead a junior heavy Conant attack this fall. The junior finished 15th in the MSL and 20th at the Schaumburg sectional, but had a strong spring capped by taking 15th in Class 3A for the 3,200. Dale is ready to make a big jump this season, and could challenge for an MSL title and also all-state honors. Serrano and Sultan will try and keep in contact with Dale giving the Cougars a solid top three. Janczy, Almodovar, Hutchison, Pesce, and Smolik will fill in the rest. Almodovar has made progress and is moving up quick. This team is sneaky good, and is looking for a date in Peoria in early November.
Coach: Darius Sanchez (third year).
Last year: 6th in MSL.
Top returning runners: Harry Winter (sr.), Nick Vucovich (sr.), Nick Macius (sr.), Danny Johnson (sr.), Joe Smaga (so.)
Outlook: Winter and Vucovich will pace Fremd; both were all-conference choices last season. Winter is on the short list for top runners in the MSL and showed his potential by taking 8th in the MSL. Vucovich will be looking to tighten the gap with Winter. The Vikings seemed to be on the cusp of qualifying for state last season, but their hopes evaporated at the sectional. Macius and Johnson are closing gap with front, and Smaga is solid No. 5. Sanchez is looking for the Vikings to challenge for a top five spot at sectionals.
Coach: Brenden Mariano (third year).
Last year: 9th in MSL.
Top returning runners: Billy Thomas (sr.), Bryan Gamboa (so.), Shiv Patel (so.), Matt Petersen (so.), Anthony Nardi (jr.), Thomas Simac (jr.), Nathan Otto (so.), Michael Sanfillippo (jr.), Nick Fortney (jr.).
Outlook: Thomas had a break-through season last year for Hoffman Estates. The then junior finished in the top ten at both the MSL (fifth place) and sectional (seventh) meet, qualifying for his first state final. Thomas has the potential to make all-state this season and could even break into the top 10 at state. He will also contend for an MSL title. Gamboa, Patel, and Petersen will pack together behind Thomas. The sophomore trio is looking to give the Hawks a lift. Simac and Nardi will challenge for a top five spot. Hoffman is emerging and could be a big surprise not only in conference, but also state.
Coach: Chris Quick (eighth year).
Last year: 9th in Class 3A, third Schaumburg sectional, MSL champions, MSL West division champions.
Key losses: Christian Zambrano, Andrew Clingerman, Zach Stella, Brian Smith.
Top returning runners: Graham Brown (jr.), Emil Kozakiewicz (sr.), Argeni Bailon (sr.), Eddie Graham (sr.), Dean Kolar (sr.), Adam Brauer (sr.).
Top newcomers: Connor McGough (jr.), Dean Roehrborn (jr.), Zack Michael (so.), Dan Trejo (so.), Ryan Kissane (so.), Nate Izewski (fr.).
Outlook: Palatine has won 10 straight MSL titles, 11 consecutive MSL West division titles, and a conference record 68 straight dual meets. The Pirates will be looking to continue those marks this season, but it won't be easy. Brown will push the pace this season and will be joined by Kozakiewicz and Bailon, who return to form the nucleus of the team. Brown is on target to make all-state and has the potential to challenge for an MSL title. Both Kozakiewicz and Bailon had a strong summer and have made progress. After the top three, Quick will be looking to fill in the spots from a long list of runners. This team will develop as season progresses and there should be plenty of names flip-flopping in the lineup. But Quick will have it ready for the end season, and the Pirates should be on target for another state berth.
Coach: Scott Lilley (third year).
Last year: 8th in MSL.
Key losses: Evan Prizy, Stephen Piller, Travis Rauch, Juan Barajas, Nick Smith.
Top returning runners: Omar Alhayek (sr.), Dhrumil Shah (sr.).
Top newcomers: Jonah Kaufmann (so.), Aj Vitter (jr.), Matt Ort (jr.), Matt Callison (jr.), Tom Young (so.) Lars Hay (so.).
Outlook: Schaumburg graduated its top six runners from last season, including Prizy and Barajas who both made all-conference. The Saxons are looking to reload and will depend on Alhayek and Shah to lead an in-experience squad.
CENTRAL SUBUBURBAN NORTH
Coach: Andrew Trotter (23rd year)
Last year: 5th in CSL North.
Key losses: Dominick Budzik, Mike Picchiotti.
Top returning runners: Alex Liston (jr.), Lucas Martin-Ranft (jr.)
Outlook: Liston and Martin-Ranft will lead a Maine West team that is in transition. Both juniors will push for all-conference honors. After that, there are questions for the Warriors. Trotter was counting on Geoff Rozo to contribute, but the senior tore his ACL in volleyball last spring, wiping out his cross country season. The CSL North is wide open this year, with Highland Park, Deerfield, Niles North, and Glenbrook North all battling for the top spot.
EAST SUBURBAN CATHOLIC
Coach: Wayne Edelman (seventh year).
Last year: 21st in Class 2A, 3rd at Fenton Sectional, 2nd in ESCC.
Key losses: Kevin Schreiber, Will Bierersdorf, Ty Sammons.
Top returning runners: Nick Brey (Sr.), Patrick Spanier (Sr.), Drew Morton (so.).
Top newcomers: Sam Brey, Jack Augustyn.
Outlook: St. Viator never qualified for a state meet until 2011, now the Lions are coming off its second consecutive appearance and this year may be even better. Brey had a fantastic season last year finishing third in the ESCC, second at the St. Viator regional, and fourth at the Fenton sectional. He capped his junior campaign in the spring by taking 10th in Class 2A in the 3,200. Brey will once again lead the Lions charge with support from Spanier. Edelman feels this year squad could be better than last season, especially with a strong sophomore class led by Morton. Look for the Lions to be back in Peoria in November.
WEST SUBURBAN GOLD
Coach: Kip Pygman ( First Year).
Last year: Third at St. Ignatius regional, fourth in WSG.
Key losses: Rocco DiMatteo (Lake Forest), Nicolas Avila (MSOE).
Top returning runners: Roberto Garcia (sr.), Joshua Pitts (jr.), Danny Vilchez (sr.), Pedro Solis (sr.)
Top newcomers: Alan Prado (so.), Mateusz Szelazek (so.).
Outlook: Leyden took a big hit in losing DiMatteo and Avila, who went 3-4 at the WSG meet. But Garcia, Pitts, and Vilchez helped the Eagles take third at the St. Ignatius regional, all three return. Szelzek and Prado have given Leyden attack a jolt and the two sophomors will lead the Eagles attack. Pygman is optimistic regarding his teams finish, and the Eagles will challenge for top 3 spot in the WSG.
Christian Liberty Academy
Coach: Bradley Wells (First year).
Top newcomers: Tommy Lowry (fr.), Joe Kreye (so.), Daniel Kosinski (jr.).
Outlook: This will be Christian Liberty Academy's first boys cross country team. The Chargers will not field a full team, but Lowry, Kreye, and Kosinski are hoping to lay a solid foundation for future teams Wells is looking for personal improvement from each member and hopes this is a start of something big for the CLA boys cross country program.