Yorkville Middle School
2019 YMSXC Alumni
Each year we recognize the graduating Yorkville High School seniors who ran cross country at the high school and also participated in Yorkville Middle School's cross country program. We consider these runners to be our All-Time Greats. They committed...
Yorkville Middle School
2019 YMSXC Alumni
January 5, 2019
Each year we recognize the graduating Yorkville High School seniors who ran cross country at the high school and also participated in Yorkville Middle School's cross country program. We consider these runners to be our All-Time Greats. They committed to run on one of the most competitive teams in the state, and whether they were the fastest runner on the team or the slowest they deserve to be recognized for their commitment. While most runners have not officially committed to run in college at this point, we will always update our All-Time Greats page to indicate athletes who go on to run cross country in college.
Olivia is one of the most successful runners in YMS cross country history. Her two-mile P.R. was 11:38 at the Tiger Trails Invite. She was also the first runner to earn All-State honors two years in a row (her teammate Colleen O’Connor also achieved this feat), and led the girls team to the first team trophy in team history with her 14th place finish. In seventh grade, Olivia was one of three All-State runners and the team finished in fourth. That year was one of only two years in which the fourth-place team at the IESA State Championships didn’t receive a trophy. Luckily, the fourth-place trophy was reinstated for Olivia’s eighth grade year and the team’s 202 points put them safely in fourth place ahead of Mt. Prospect Lincoln’s 231 points.
In high school, Olivia ran on the State team every year. Her freshman year, Olivia was the team’s seventh runner and ran 18:53 at State to finish in 95th place out of over 200 runners. This was Yorkville’s last year at the 2A level and they finished with their fifth State championship in a row. As a sophomore, Olivia was the team’s fifth runner and ran a 17:50 to finish in 53rd place at the 3A level and help the team earn a second-place trophy behind Naperville North. As a junior, Olivia was the team’s fourth runner in 48th place with a time of 17:49 as the team once again finished second behind Naperville North. This past year, Olivia struggled with injuries, but still improved at State with a time of 17:39 in 53rd place while Yorkville finished second to Naperville North again while the team ran the second-fastest team race in State history. Olivia also ran at Nike Cross Nationals the past two years with the team, which are the only two years Yorkville has qualified for the national race in Oregon. Olivia is committed to run cross country and track at DePaul University next year, and she is sure to see the same success she had in Yorkville.
Victoria was one of the best teammates on the team during her two years in middle school. Always supportive and encouraging, Victoria, while not officially a team captain, was a great role model. She was always one of the hardest workers on the team and was the first one to lift someone up when they had a bad race. Victoria won the Future Potential Award in seventh grade, and lived up to that potential by making the State team as an eighth grader. She went from a P.R. of 13:48 in seventh grade to a P.R. of 12:31 in eighth grade. She was the key fifth runner on the trophy-winning team with a time of 12:43 in 109th place out of 215 runners.
In high school, Victoria ran at State her sophomore year as the girls finished second to Naperville North. Her time of 19:13 was good enough for 181st place as she was the team’s seventh runner. Victoria had a P.R. of 18:45 in high school and was just as strong of a teammate for her four years on the high school team as she was during her two years in middle school.
After a lot of convincing from Coach Martin and Emily’s brother Jimmy, Emily joined cross country in eighth grade after a successful track season. Without Emily joining the team, it is unlikely the girls would have won the first trophy in YMS cross country history during her eighth grade year. Emily actually ran a P.R. at State while also breaking 12 minutes for the first time with her time of 11:52. She was the one of three All-State runners for the team that year with her finish in 21st place.
What Emily did in middle school pales in comparison to what she did in high school. While Emily had to work through her Type I Diabetes in middle school, it didn’t affect her as much as when she was on the high school team. Injuries shortened Emily’s season her freshman year and she was not a part of the State team her sophomore year. Emily is lucky to be in a program with such good coaches, however, and a plan was developed to keep Emily healthy without subjecting her to the high-mileage of a typical cross country runner. This strategy began to play out during Emily’s junior year when she was an All-State runner finishing in 22nd place with a time of 17:12. During Emily’s senior year, she alternated being the team’s top runner with Kailey Fox and Helena Kleronomos. Emily was second on the team with a 13th place All-State finish in 16:46 during a runner-up finish to Naperville North. Emily topped off her cross country career with a masterful race at Nike Cross Nationals. Emily was the team’s top runner with a time of 17:57 in 39th place. While Emily hasn’t signed on to run cross country in college as of this post, she would be incredibly successful for any coach who is understanding enough to personalize workouts for her.
Alex has the enviable position of holding five team records that will never be broken because they were in meets we no longer attend or, in the case of Tiger Trails, a meet that changed its race distance for seventh graders. Alex also holds our seventh grade record at Troy with a time of 11:51. Those who know the Troy course know it is a tough course to break 12 minutes on, especially for a seventh grader. In fact, only two other seventh graders have ever accomplished that feat. Alex set a standard for other runners to follow during his time on the middle school team. He is the only runner in this group of All-Time Greats who had perfect attendance in seventh grade and eighth grade. He ran at State both years as well, finishing in 103rd place with a time of 11:37 in seventh grade and just missing All-State in eighth grade with a finish in 27th place and a time of 10:56.
In high school, Alex ran for the State series team his sophomore year and senior years. Alex was typically one of the top five runners during his senior year and finished second on the team at the Quincy Sectional with a time of 16:14 in 29th place. While Alex didn’t get the chance to run at State his senior year, he did run at State during his sophomore year when Yorkville moved up to the highest class for the first time. Alex broke 16 minutes on the fabled Detweiller course with his time of 15:54. Alex has left an indelible mark on Yorkville Middle School cross country and we look forward to seeing what he does in the future.
Ashley is the type of runner we love to recognize as an All-Time Great. That’s because Ashley was never one of the top runners on the cross country team. She was a sprinter on the track team in seventh grade and, most likely with some nudging from Coach Martin, decided to try out cross country as an eighth grader. She started the season with two time trials over 19 minutes, but ended up running a respectable P.R. of 16:06 at the Tiger Trails Invite by the end of the season to put her firmly in the middle of the team.
The thing we really like about Ashley is she stuck with cross country even though it wasn’t her main sport and she was probably never going to run at State. Ashley ran cross country every year in high school, running a P.R. of 24:46 during the last meet of her career at the Northern Illinois Big 12 Championship. She still has the upcoming track season to look forward to as she focuses on the sprint events, but it was great to see her stick with cross country during all four years of high school.
Ben joined cross country as a seventh grader and had a successful season while running a P.R. of 13:23 at Lyon Farm. Ben really came into his own during his eighth grade year, however. Ben applied to be a team captain and ended up winning the Captain of the Year award at the end of the season. In addition, Ben’s teammates voted him the MVP in eighth grade despite Ben not being the team’s top runner. Ben was typically the team’s fourth or fifth runner in eighth grade, but his MVP award is a testament to how important he was seen by his teammates. Ben qualified for State as an eighth grade and finished in 87th place with a P.R. of 11:27 as the team’s fourth runner helping the boys team finish in seventh place.
In high school, Ben did not run at State his freshman or sophomore year, but was an integral part of the team those two years and was an alternate his sophomore year. His last IHSA race was at the Quincy Sectional when he ran a 16:16 as the team’s fourth runner to finish in 31st place. Ben’s only chance to run at State came as a junior when he broke 16 minutes for the first time to run a 15:48 and finish in 154th place as the team’s third runner. Ben is one of the highest-character athletes you’ll ever meet and he will be sorely missed when he graduates in May.
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