Lady Ghosts top all competitors

Staff Writer
Chillicothe Times-Bulletin

The Illinois Valley Central girls cross country team sprinted into the fall season Sept. 2 by defeating three teams at Walnut.

IVC (3-0) topped the four-team event with 32 points, followed by Princeton with 61, Henry 64 and Bureau Valley 82.

“Being our first meet and for many of our runners, it was also their first high school meet, I wasn’t sure what to expect,” said coach Mike Themas.

“I knew Marci Furuholmen (15:10) was in good shape, and she looked good finishing first for us and second overall out of 25 runners.

“What I really liked was our pack of girls finished 6 through 10. Rachel Wargo (17:08), who had the most summer miles for us, has really impressed and finished second for us.

“She was closely followed by sophomore Sara James. Kelsey Thornton (17:22) continues to improve and finished fourth. First-year runner sophomore Cecily Stedwill (17:31) finished fifth for us.

Also, first-year sophomore Emily Pence (17:54) placed sixth for IVC. And seventh was freshman Jessica Owdom (18:13). This meet was a good start for us.”

Results on the 2.2-mile course overall were: 2. Furuholmen; 6. Wargo; 7. Sara James (17:11); 8. Thornton; 9. Stedwill; 10. Pence; 12. Owdom; 17. Liz Norris (19:01); 18. Mikayla Vail (19:13); 22. Lindsey James (20:05); and 26. Bethany Espinosa (22:48).

With the flu bug striking the boys’ team, IVC (84 points) finished behind Bureau Valley 26, Henry 42 and Princeton 71.

“We didn’t run well,” said Themas. “Three out of our top five were sick with the flu. I thought our No. 2 runner, senior Danny Kendzierski (13:49), had a good race.

“I’m not sure what we will have yet until we get our top seven back and healthy. I do know we will be better than we showed in this meet. Several of our boys had a good summer running.”

Boys’ results were: 7. David Weber (13:06); 10. Kendzierski; 19. Corey Gondeck 14:46; 23. Caleb Bjerk (15:06); 25. Richard Mayerhofer (16:09); 26. Miles Bannister (16:13) and 33. Will Smith (21:43).

IVC was at Peoria Richwoods Tuesday, and heads to Woodruff at 9 a.m. Saturday.