A near picture-perfect day in late October at Naperville North for regional cross-country action as Metea Valley, Waubonsie Valley, Naperville Central, Neuqua Valley and Naperville North look to qualify for the sectionals next week in Hinsdale. This highlight is sponsored by BMO.


The girls varsity is underway at 10 am and to no surprise, it was Naperville Central’s Liv Phillips and Naperville North’s Julie Piot who get ahead of the group early.

After mile one, it is Phillips and Piot at an even pace side by side. Waubonsie Valley freshman Mia Bertolini is just ahead of Downers Grove South’s Holly Johnson, who has Neuqua Valley’s Addison Guskey trailing. The Tandon twins Shania and Rianna are six and seven as their teammate Emma Berres, and Naperville Central’s Lola Satre Morales followed. For Metea Valley their one and two in Maya Hall and Kamea Baker are teamed up in the top 10. Naperville North’s Bridget Kacedan and Bryann Pfeiffer battle with Neuqua Valley junior Sienna McEneaney to stay within the top 15. Katherine Heap from Waubonsie Valley and Keira Nelson and Zoe Kirkman from Metea Valley are also near the top 20


Approaching the second mile, Phillips and Piot continue stride for stride as the rest of the pack starts to separate themselves. Bertolini stays just ahead of Johnson, Rianna Tandon is running in the fifth spot and Guskey closes in on the sixth. Shania Tandon and Berres partner up for the Huskies at seven and eight. The Mustangs duo, Hall and Baker catch up to Satre-Morales and Abbey Mogg moves her way up.

With the final stretch approaching, Phillips starts to break away from Piot as the two runners have a minute and twenty-six second lead over third place. Johnson pulls away from Bertolini for third who is trailed by three North runners, Rianna, Berres and Shania, all looking to close in. Satre-Morales and Mogg find each other teaming up as they make their turn.


Cruising her way into another first place finish, Phillips crossed the end line with a time of 17:17.90 to win the regional. Piot is in second with 17:31.60 and Johnson holds onto the third spot with a time of 18:43;40. Rianna Tandon claims fourth, followed by Bertolini in fourth. Berres with a time 18:56.30 finishes just ahead of Shania Tandon with a time of 18:59.60. Satre-Morales edges her teammate, Mogg by exactly one second, as three North runners in Anika Lovisa, Pfeiffer and Kaceden round out the top 10. Kamea Baker and teammate Julia Hannon finished 19:22.30 and 19:22.70. Waubonsie’s Lily Baibak gets 15th and Guskey for the Wildcats is just behind. West Aurora’s Itzel Figueroa is in 18th followed by Hall and Addison Richter for Oswego rounds out the top 20.

Naperville North takes the team victory in first place and will advance along with the other top five schools next week at Katherine Legge Memorial Park to compete in sectionals. Naperville Central, Metea Valley, Downers Grove South, Waubonsie Valley and Oswego are all team qualifiers as well. Neuqua Valley has three individual sectional qualifiers with Sienna McEneaney and freshman Valentina Namvar joining Addison Guskey.

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