Updated: November 2, 2012 6:10AM
Tinley Park and Oak Forest have split the last four South Suburban Blue titles.
But with a deep team aided by an influx of contributing freshmen and sophomores, Lemont coach Erin Boyd thinks the Indians could be in the mix for the conference title.
“We have a lot of new freshmen and sophomores who are training hard and earning their spots in the lineup,” Boyd said. “We’re looking forward to the conference meet, and we’ve left a lot of room for improvement.”
The South Suburban Blue meet is scheduled for
Oct. 25 and 27 at Bremen. Lemont has defeated Bremen, Richards, Reavis, Argo, Eisenhower, Oak Lawn and Hillcrest in conference meets, while falling by a six-point margin to Evergreen Park. Duals with Tinley Park and Oak Forest remain on the schedule.
Sophomore Annette Lesnicki (100-yard butterfly) and junior Erin Bendle have been leaders for Lemont.
“We’ve got 30 kids on the team and 10 are completely new to swimming,” Boyd said. “We’re still shooting for personal bests and pool records wherever we go. We’d love to get someone, individual or relay, back to state.”
Two of the state’s top young golfers will duke it out for medalist honors at the Class 2A Joliet Central Regional this week.
Lincoln-Way West’s Alexis Biedrzycki and Lincoln-Way East’s Kelly Sterling, both two-time conference champions in their respective SouthWest Suburban divisions, will square off Wednesday at Inwood Golf Course in Joliet.
Just sophomores, the two are as experienced as they come. Last season, Sterling placed 29th in the state, while Biedrzycki was 39th.
“I’m excited for regionals and sectionals and a chance to redeem myself at state,” Biedrzycki said after winning the SWSC Red title with a 1-over 73 at Silver Lakes Country Club on Thursday. “It’s definitely a confidence-booster (winning conference) heading into regional play.”
SWSC Blue champion Lincoln-Way East looks to be the cream of the crop in the regional. The Griffins will be pushed by Providence, Sandburg, Joliet Catholic and SWSC Red champ Lincoln-Way North.
North senior Margaret Curtin is another individual to watch. She placed second behind Biedrzycki in the SWSC Red Tournament by one stroke.
Girls Cross Country
The IHSA last week released sites for regional and sectional meets that include a regional at Lockport, the area’s top team in the 2011 Class 3A state meet.
The 10-team field in the Oct. 20 race at Dellwood Park will include Plainfield Central, Plainfield South, Plainfield North, Plainfield East, Bolingbrook and Romeoville. Lockport was team champion last year at the Plainfield South Regional.
Regionals hosted by Sandburg and Lyons also will advance teams to the Oct. 27 Marist Sectional. Marist and No. 1 runner Maggie O’Loughlin will be among those in the Sandburg field at Midlothian Meadows.
Minooka and Lincoln-Way Central, two programs with recent state meet experience, will be in the Indians’ regional at Channahon Community Park. Lincoln-Way East, another 2011 state meet team, will be among nine schools in the Andrew Regional at Turtlehead Lake.
Illiana Christian and Lemont, two of the top teams in Class 2A, will be in separate regionals. Illiana Christian will host a nine-team field at North Creek Meadows, while Lemont will face defending state champion Yorkville and third-place state finisher Montini at the Wheaton Academy Regional.
Lincoln-Way West sophomore Natalie Waters, the top local returnee in Class 2A, will head the field at the nine-team Morris Regional.
Boys Cross Country
The IHSA last week released regional and sectional sites that include regionals at Sandburg and Minooka, both of whom finished among the top 15 in the 2011 Class 3A meet.
Shepard, Marist and Brother Rice will be among the eight teams chasing host Sandburg and senior leaders Pat McMahon and Pat Letz on Oct. 20 at Midlothian Meadows.
Minooka and No. 1 runner Joey Santillo likely will face its strongest competition from 2011 state qualifier Lincoln-Way Central in the Indians’ eight-team regional at Channahon Community Park.
Plainfield South and Plainfield East, both state meet qualifiers last year, will be part of a strong field in the Lockport Regional at Dellwood Park. The team to beat at Lockport will be Neuqua Valley, third in Class 3A last season.
Lincoln-Way East and Thornwood should be contenders at the Andrew Regional that includes Bloom, Homewood-Flossmoor, Lincoln-Way North and T.F. South.
Illiana Christian, 12th in Class 2A last year, will host a regional at North Creek Meadows that includes 2011 South Suburban Blue champ Oak Forest.
Beecher’s Grant Nykaza, the defending Class 1A runner-up, will head the 16-team field at the Bishop McNamara Regional.