Prospect back on track; Barrington wraps up West

Prospect's girls cross country team had a bit of an off day at the Palatine Invitational, but the Knights were back on it Thursday.

Prospect placed seven runners in the top eight in cruising to a pair of victories at its Mid-Suburban League East triangular at Melas Park in Arlington Heights.

Prospect defeated Buffalo Grove 15-50 and topped Wheeling 15-48.

Freshman Marissa Valentini (19:42) and junior Brooke Wilson (19:43) helped the Knights rebound on Thursday by going 1-2. Prospect has taken a firm hold on the MSL East division and is looking to secure its eighth consecutive East title next Thursday when it hosts Rolling Meadows.

Valentini was one of the four freshmen runners in the Knights' top seven. The newcomers have definitely made an early impact.

"We're definitely getting more comfortable," said Valentini, who finished as the Knights' sixth runner at Palatine. "I didn't have my best day on Saturday, but it made me stronger."

Wilson has been solid from the start of the season, including her impressive second-place finish at the Palatine Invitational. And she didn't have a letdown on Thursday.

"No one really knows what we're capable of," said Wilson. "We don't really have expectations. Every race is a learning experience for the freshmen, and they are always growing. The best is yet to come."

Prospect junior Aileen White (20:06), sophomore Mikayla Olsen (20:08), and freshman Julia O'Grady (20:12) went 3-4-5. Freshman Cori Drew (20:30) and freshman Jenna Baltes (20:30) were seventh and eighth.

Wheeling senior Melissa Rodriguez (20:21) broke up the Knights' line by taking sixth place and leading the Wildcats to a 23-32 victory over Buffalo Grove.

"I was a little intimidated, but I just kept my head up and kept going," said Rodriguez.

Buffalo Grove senior Kaitlyn Ko (20:55) and senior Natalie Lezama (20:56) finished ninth and tenth for the Bison.

Barrington wrap up West title: Barrington placed five runners in the top ten in securing a pair of key victories in securing the Mid-Suburban West division title at the Hoffman Estate triangular at Barrington Pond on Thursday.

Sophomore Jocelyn Long (15:52) took first for the Fillies in a 19-38 victory over host Hoffman Estates and a 21-36 victory over Schaumburg.

Barrington, ranked No. 8 in the Illinois Cross Country Coaches Poll, won its first West title since 2006.

"It's pretty exciting," said Barrington coach Deb Revolta of the Fillies title. "The girls have worked really hard and they deserve it."

Senior Lauren Conroy (16:19) took third, followed by junior Sammie Samaryczew (16:45) and freshman Sophie Hoeltgen (16:48) in 5-6.

Freshman Eve Hoeltgen (17:31) completed the scoring by taking 10th place for the Fillies.

Hoffman Estates senior Meagan Biddle (16:41) finished fourth in leading the Hawks to a 26-29 victory over No. 14 Schaumburg. Sophomore Allison Schrader (16:53) aided the Hawks with a seventh-place finish.

Sophomore Maddie Marasco (16:02) paced Schaumburg with a second-place finish, with sophomore Lauren Kubinski (17:17) and Ellie O'Connell (17:19) going 8-9 for the Saxons.

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