AURORA – In their own backyard, Waubonsie Valley boys cross country took first place in the DuPage Valley Conference Championship on Saturday at Waubonsie Valley High School. It was the team’s first conference title since 2004, when they won the Upstate Eight Conference. The Warriors finished ahead of second-place Neuqua Valley and third-place DeKalb.
Senior Angel Solis finished third in 15:25.0, and senior Ethan Marshall finished fourth in 15:25.2. Seniors Andres Perez (15:51.4) and Jacob Tukker (15:52.6) also placed in the top ten. Senior Chris Miserendino finished 12th in 16:03.8.
The consistent message from athletes all year had been the “pack mentality.”
“You might not think it’s a team sport, but it really is,” said Marshall after the race. “Everyone matters. It’s important for everyone to be together. You’re running together. You’re depending on your teammates, you’re less focused on yourself. When we’re in workouts in practice, we’re running together. We’re racing together.”
“What we’ve asked these kids to do over the course of all this time with the pandemic was really tough,” said head coach Kevin Rafferty. “What it did with this group was it forged a really strong bond. They were really asked to mature really quickly. These are outstanding young men who deserve this with every inch of their being.”
The Warriors compete at IHSA Regionals on Saturday at 11:00 a.m. at Oswego East High School.