by Mike Slodki
ELBURNâ€”In a tough group of teams, Kaneland had several standouts at the first-ever gathering of the Northern Illinois Big XII conference.
The meet at Elburn Woods saw the Yorkville Foxes take the crown with 46 points, compared to Dixonâ€™s 75.
The Knightsâ€™ 138-point total was good for seventh, ahead of Rochelle (183) and behind Sterling (135).
Sterlingâ€™s Jacob Landis, at 16 minutes, nine seconds, took the course crown by nine seconds over Dixonâ€™s Simon Thorpe.
Next up was Knight Trevor Holm, who has been at or near the top for much of this season.
Holm, who ran his Elburn Woods-best at 16:24, had a good run at this late regular season juncture, according to KHS coach Chad Clarey.
â€œOur goal today was to try and hit some personal records on this course, because itâ€™s far different from the rest that we compete on,â€ Clarey said. â€œTrevor had a great race and heâ€™s still coming back from being sick last week. Heâ€™s in a good spot. He might be disappointed that he didnâ€™t win on his home course, but you canâ€™t always pick your best races.â€
â€œAlthough he may not have been satisfied with the outcome, he will continue to feel fresher and faster with the taper,â€ Clarey said.
Junior Nate Rehkopf was 23rd at 17:24, and also set a new PR for himself.
â€œIâ€™m pretty pleased how weâ€™re doing as a team and how Iâ€™m doing personally,â€ Rehkopf said. â€œTrevorâ€™s been good leading the guys, and itâ€™s usually been me, Clayton Brundige and Grant Alef backing him up. We have a good team on all levels.â€
Tommy Whittaker, running his last Elburn Woods course, ran in 17:49 and set a new PR, as well.
Additionally, junior Jake Ginther finished 33rd with a time of 18:07.
Photo: Tommy Whittaker runs his way to a 17:49 finish during Saturdayâ€™s Northern Illinois Big XII meet at Elburn Woods. Photo by Ashley Leonetti