Cross country: Jacobs sweeps titles at Bartlett's Flyin' Hawk
Spectators standing at the top of Bartlett High School's football stadium bleachers had the best view of Saturday's Flyin' Hawk cross country invite.
They could see the race start behind the stands, follow the runners' progress around the course on the school campus boundaries, and cheer their favorites as they crossed the finish line inside the stadium.
Fans watched as South Elgin's Naomi Ruff pulled away from the pack to win the girls varsity race with a time of 17:35.2. In the boys varsity race, they followed Riley Newport of DeKalb as he led from start to end, finishing in 14:53.2.
"I was hoping to go out controlled which I executed," Ruff said. "I just tried to pick it up each lap."
"I was just going to go out with the leaders and if the pace wasn't what I wanted I was going to take off," said Newport. "I hit my stride at one mile. I just went with that and took off. It was PR (personal record) for me by six seconds."
Jacobs took home top team honors in both events. Paced by Kelly Carpenter's fourth-place finish (17:59.2), the Golden Eagles won the girls race with 48 points.
The boys team finished with a score of 83 points to earn first place. Top finisher was Aidan DeMuth who finished eighth (16:00.3).
"For the girls, we had a breakout race. Our girls who ran third and fourth dropped massive times today," said Jacobs coach Kevin Christian. "Bailey Schwartz, a freshman, got ninth today. She had never broken 19 (minutes) and she went 18:23 today. Ella Tamburrino's PR going into today was 19:30 and she went 18:42."
"The boys finally ran as a pack. We have been waiting for that," Christian said. "We've only had a 10-second split between (runners) one through four."
The race, which at least since 2006 was held at Sunset Park, was moved to Bartlett High School this year. A plus from the change was increasing the number of teams competing.
"This was the first year we brought it over to the school and I have been getting nothing but position remarks. We moved mainly because of COVID and only being approved for X number of teams over there," said Bartlett boys coach Denny Lau. "We can control things over here and can have as many teams as possible. We capped it at 22 because that was just about the amount of room we have."
Aided by a second-place finish by Isabella Gonzalez in 17:42.9, Crystal Lake South finished second in the girls race (65 points).
Bella Dicrosta's third-place finish (17.47.4) enabled St. Charles North (67) to take the same spot in the team standings.
Jenna Buchanan from Bartlett (17:59.6) took fifth, only four tenths of a second behind Carpenter.
"There were a lot of unknowns heading into the meet," Crystal Lake South girls coach Ken Greenfield said. "We have a couple of top-flight varsity runners, Addie Frisch and Abby Machesky, competing in their first Saturday varsity race. They looked very solid. They are getting their feet under them. It was the first time we have had our top seven together in a big invitational. I thought we ran a really solid race."
South Elgin (128) came in fourth and West Aurora (131) took fifth. Devon Thomas (19:26.3) at 22nd was the top Blackhawk runner. Lincoln-Way Central's Caden Simone finished second in the boys race (15:07.8) followed by Bartlett's Carter Eid (15:35.6),
"My goal was to come through in five (minutes) flat for the first mile which I did exactly and then just see where it took me," Eid said. "I ran a couple of 5:20s to finish the race."
Rounding out the top five were Quintin Lowe (15:46.5) from Batavia and South Elgin's Dylan Lainez (15:54.9).
Newport's sub 15-minute time contributed to DeKalb's second-place finish (86). Lincoln-Way Central came in third (110).
West Aurora finished fourth (111) paced by Ayden Jenkins (sixth, 15:55.1) and Sean Heetland (seventh, 15:56.0).
Led by Vijay Krishnamoothi's 15th-place finish (16:10.1), Conant took fifth place (142).