“Detweiller at Dark” is a growing summer cross country event held at Detweiller Park in Peoria, home of the Illinois High School Association (IHSA) state championship each year. While this fun event isn’t a part of the IHSA season, it is a good test for high school and youth runners across the state to shine in an exciting and entertaining environment.
Hersey High School rising senior Anna Harden, competing for Arlington XC, won the girls high school 3-mile race in 17:18.7 to easily beat runner-up Natalie Bierbaum (17:24.1).
Loyola Academy’s Jane Lynch ran unattached and finished fifth in 18:06.3. Maine South rising junior Olivia DeLuca also ran unattached and finished seventh in 18:22.6.
A total of 444 high school girls competed in the race. An open race included college runners. In total, 1,359 athletes ran in the meet Friday, July 29 in Peoria.
Neon lights, cosmetic smoke and music, along with pyrotechnics, made for a fun atmosphere for the participants.
Arlington XC, which finished sixth as a team, included Mackenzie Ginder (43rd place, 19:31.3), Madeline Bialko (68th, 19:56.4), Gabi Makowski (102nd, 20:40.6), Catherine Hany (116th, 20:50.9), Emily Lifka (136th, 21:16.8), Lauren Rocks (202nd, 22:22.2), Renee Skiera (240th, 22:49.9) and Audrey Coffey (342nd, 25:26.7). The Arlington team consisted of all Hersey runners at the event.
Jack Jennings (Palatine/Plum Grove Jr. High/Fremd ‘27) dominated the 2.1-mile Junior High School boys race, winning in 11:12.6. Runner-up Alex Gordon finished in 11:34.7.
IESA 2021 Class 1A state champion Maxwell Kirby (Blessed Sacrament, Morton) finished fourth in 11:41.9.
In the open women’s race, Eastern Illinois’ Katie Springer won in 18:25.9. Prospect alum Paige Runkle, who competes at North Central College, finished eighth in 21:28.3.
Andrew Pilat, a McHenry High school and Eastern Illinois University alum, won the men’s open race in 14:52.4. Palatine alum Brandon Waller finished ninth in 15:41.8 as an unattached runner to lead the Journal-area.
The boys high school race was won by Pinckneyville’s Isaac Teel in 14:45.3 over Marion’s Dylon Nalley (14:48.3). There were no Journal-area runners in the top 50.
The 2.1-mile Junior High girls race was won by Juliana Gamboa (12:37.2).Support local news by subscribing to the Journal & Topics in print or online.