CRYSTAL LAKE – Marian Central senior Siobhan Stoll had a couple of thoughts pass through her mind during the McHenry County Cross Country Meet girls race.
Stoll enjoyed the scenic surroundings of the challenging Veteran Acres Park course. She also kept thinking about Crystal Lake South’s Mackenzie Aldridge, the race’s defending champion.
Both made her run faster.
“I like the course. It’s really pretty, so it makes the race go by quickly,” Stoll said. “It’s hard, but I kind of get distracted.
“[Aldridge] has a really good kick. I was trying to get as far away from her as possible. It makes me go a lot faster than I would normally.”
Stoll covered the 3.1-mile course in 19:24 to take the title Saturday morning, besting Aldridge by 22 seconds. Huntley’s Bailey Wilk was third and McHenry’s Lydia Zancho was fourth.
No team scores are recorded, although Jacobs put six runners in the top 19 and would have won that title with 52 points, followed by Huntley (68) and South (98).
“[The race] went really well,” Stoll said. “I went out with the pack, and I broke away about halfway through.”
Stoll struggled with injuries as a sophomore, but had a strong track and field season in the spring.
“This is the most running I’ve done,” Stoll said. “I’ve gotten a full year-and-a-half of running and haven’t been hurt, so that’s nice.”
First-year Marian coach Murray Domich is thrilled at the chance to coach Stoll and boys runners Ryan Jones and Peter Walsdorf, who finished third and fourth in the boys race.
“She’s worked really hard, she deserved it,” Domich said. “She does everything I ask of her. It’s basically what I expected today, a little surprise to a lot of people, I’m sure. She ran as good as I could have expected.”
Aldridge and Stoll will see each other Saturday at the South Invitational on the same course.
“I was disappointed in my time and how I felt, but I’m ready to race again,” Aldridge said. “She’s a very smart runner. She’ll be great competition in the future. Today was a little rough, next week will be better.”
Wilk and Zancho battled it out for most of the race before the Red Raiders senior found some distance near the end.
“My goal was top three,” Wilk said. “I was really pushing for that. I would have been ecstatic with top five. My coach was yelling at me the last 400 to get that last girl [Zancho]. Right down the hill I sprinted as fast as I could to catch her.”
Zancho started last season with a fifth-place finish at county, but was nagged by injuries that held her back at the end of the year.
“I thought [the race] went well,” Zancho said. “I tried to stay smart in the beginning and then pass in the second mile and give it all I had in the last mile. [Wilk] really pushed me, and I was trying to keep up with her. She got me at the end.”
McHenry County Meet
Top 20 individuals: 1. Siobhan Stoll (Marian Central) 19:24, 2. Mackenzie Aldridge (CL South) 19:46, 3. Bailey Wilk (Huntley) 19:52, 4. Lydia Zancho (McHenry) 20:04, 5. Morgan Dieschbourg (Cary-Grove) 20:07, 6. Kylie Smith (CL Central) 20:39, 7. Alyson Doherty (Jacobs) 20:39, 8. Delaney Blohm (CG) 20:54, 9. Kelly Carpenter (Jac) 21:04, 10. Colette Janik (Prairie Ridge) 21:07, 11. Rylee Lydon (PR) 21:07, 12. Elisabeth Kania (Jac) 21:17, 13. Grace Allen (Hunt) 21:19, 14. Alyssa Demma (Jac) 21:22, 15. Ella Tamburrino (Jac) 21:22, 16. Genevieve Collatz (Hunt) 21:27, 17. Addie Frisch (CLS) 21:39, 18. Shannon Koscinski (Woodstock) 21:51, 19. Avery Mason (Jac) 21:52, 20. Emily Glass (Hunt) 21:52.
(No official team scores are kept)
1. Jacobs 52, 2. Huntley 68, 3. Crystal Lake South 98, 4. Cary-Grove 103, 5. Prairie Ridge 116, 6. Crystal Lake Central 149, 7. McHenry 153, 8. Woodstock North 191, 9. Woodstock 229.