The Monticello girls’ and boys’ cross country teams competed in the Illinois Prairie Conference Varsity Championship meet at St. Joseph-Ogden High School Saturday.

Jackson Grambart may have produced the best description of Saturday’s Illini Prairie Conference girls’ and boys’ cross-country meets.

“We really felt like it was kind of like a miniature state,” the Monticello junior said.

It’s easy to see why he and many others gathered at St. Joseph Community Park for the morning’s races felt that way.

The girls’ field contained last year’s Class 1A second-, third-, seventh-, 11thand 17th-place teams.

The boys’ docket included the previous season’s Class 1A champion, as well as its Nos. 3, 18 and 19 squads.

Quite a prestigious lineup indeed.

And those running Saturday didn’t disappoint, with numerous personal bests recorded amid cool and cloudy conditions on the flat, grassy layout.

Girls’ team

The Sages girls’ team remained undefeated by winning the meet by 16 points.

“Our girls team is looking really good right now,” said Monticello coach David Remmert. “Our top four are better than any top four girls we’ve had on any cross country team in school history.”

The Sages scored 29 team points, while Tolono-Unity followed with 45 for second. Olympia’s 90 teams points placed third, St. Thomas More’s 122 fourth, St. Joseph-Ogden’s 136 fifth, Bloomington Central Catholic’ 141 sixth and Illinois Valley Central’s 151 seventh.

“Our top four girls are in the top 11 runners in all of Class 1A statewide, although these websites are only as good as the data that goes into them,” Remmert said.

Those top four are Mabry Bruhn, senior Grace Talbert, sophomore Estella Miller and junior Rachel Koon. All four runners placed in the top six spots.

Bruhn won the meet with a time of 17:19.1, and Talbert followed in second at 18:09.5.

Miller ran a 18:26.68 for fifth place, and Koon cross the line at 18:52.15 for sixth place.

Sophomore Rose Talbert and junior Kyara Welter ran a 19:52.36 and 20:03.08, respectively, for 16th and 18th places.

Senior Emma Brown placed 20th with a time of 20:13.82 to round out the Sages’ times.

“It’s fun to watch them compete each week and we are really looking forward to the upcoming championship meets at our regional and sectional,” Remmert said.

Boys’ team

The boy’s cross country team placed second with 44 team points in the Illinois Prairie Conference Varsity Championship meet at St. Joseph-Ogden. Olympia won the meet with 39 points.

The rest of the teams finished in this order: St. Joseph-Ogden (60), Tolono-Unity (96), Illinois Valley Central (151), Pontiac (162), Bloomington Central Catholic (181), Rantoul (201) and Prairie Central (251).

“Our boys team is starting to come together very well,” said Remmert. “We were second today but only five points behind the top ranked team in the state. We had a number of injuries early on with our team but they are now healthy and training well and it shows.”

Junior Jackson Grambart took second place with a time of 15:40.36, and senior Josh Baysore followed two second behind in third place at 15:42.30.

Junior Ed Mitchell placed sixth with a time of 17:05.59.

Senior Joey Wenke and senior Shawn Derby ran a 16:19.39 and 16:50.87 for 15th and 18th place, in that order.

Sophomore Logan Sikorski placed 27th with a time of 17:40.3, and freshman Rylan Good rounded out the team’s times at 17:42.0.

Monticello is set to host the Sages Invite at 9 a.m. Saturday. Teams include Olney, St. Jo, STM, PBL, UNI-High and Mahomet.

Tuesday, Oct. 20, the Sages are scheduled to race against A-O/Bement/Tuscola/Villa Grove at 4:30 p.m. at Wimple Park.

The cross country teams are then scheduled to enter regional action Saturday with place and time to be determined.

“The IHSA has not announced a state meet this year,” said Remmert. “All teams go through a regional, and the top teams in each regional then are allowed to compete at sectional. There are five sectionals in the state, and traditionally the top five teams in each sectional would compete at state.”


Other cross country news

Bement, Cerro Gordo and Arthur-Lovington-Atwood-Hammond cross country teams ran in two competitive meets this past week: the Sullivan Open and the Clinton Cross Country Invitational.

Sullivan Open

The Bement and Arthur-Lovington-Atwood-Hammond boys’ and girls’ cross country teams competed in the Sullivan Open Tuesday, Oct. 6.

Boys’ meet

For the boys’ teams, the Knights won the meet with a team score of 23.

Tuscola (57), Sullivan (68), Villa Grove (93), Bement (142) and Hume-Shiloh (146) rounded out the standings.

ALAH placed four runners in the top six spots.

Sophomore Logan Beckmier took first with a time of 16:18.

Sophomore Lyle Adcock ran a 16:52 for third place, and junior Jace Green ran a 16:57 for sixth place.

For the Bulldogs, junior Jacob Stoerger finished 14th with a time of 18:32, and senior Jessee Quick finished 24th at 19:30.

Sophomore Kade Alumbaugh and freshman Evan Fogerson placed 31st and 36th, respectively, with times of 20:51 and 22:22.

Junior Aidan Marshall rounded out the Bulldogs’ time at 24:44 and a 37th place finish.

Girls’ meet

For the girls’ teams, the Knights won the meet with 31 points, and Tuscola and Villa Grove placed second (34 points) and third (55 points), respectively.

For ALAH, sophomore Charley Condill and junior Alisha Frederick placed second and third with times of 21:11 and 21:31, in that order.

Sophomore Emma Edwards ran a 22:25 for seventh place, and senior Makenzie Brown finished 12 with a time of 22:53.

Sophomore Sarah Rafferty crossed the line at 23:02 for 14th place, and senior Mackenzi Bowles finished 23rd with a time of 26:09.

For Bement, freshman Caroline Hill placed 15th with a time of 23:19, and sophomore Haley Garrett finished the race at 24:28 for 19th place.

Bement is scheduled to host Cerro Gordo Thursday, Oct. 15, and Tuesday, Oct. 20, the Bulldogs are set to travel to Tuscola at 4:30 p.m. for a meet.

Clinton Cross Country Invitational

The Cerro Gordo boys’ and girls’ cross country team competed in the Clinton High School Cross Country Invitational Friday.

The “hypothetical” scores were St. Teresa first with 32 points for first, Clinton second with 33, Cerro Gordo fourth at 80 and Sullivan fourth at 98.

For the Broncos, freshman Dylan Howell led the way with a third place finish and a time of 17:33.66.

Junior Collin Warren placed 10th with a time of 19:25.83, and senior Luke Dobson ran a 20:14.46 for 16th place.

Senior Hunter Rinker, sophomore Camren Brown and junior Jared Lents placed back-to-back-to-back at 32nd, 33rd and 34th.

Rinker ran a 23:16.47, Brown a 23:49.68 and Lents a 23:57.25.

Sophomore Kyle Dobson rounded out the Broncos’ times with a 36th place finish at 32:27.21.

For Cerro Gordo girls’ team, senior Hannah Hayes ran a 30:53.08 for 20th place.

The Broncos are scheduled to take on Bement Thursday, Oct. 15.

Tuesday, Oct. 20, Cerro Gordo is set to travel to Tuscola at 4:30 p.m. for a meet.

Regional action is set for Oct. 24.