Mendota harriers compete at Byron, LaSalle County Invite


Mendota High School’s cross country team traveled to Byron’s Forest Preserve on Sept. 29 to compete against Amboy and host school Byron.

In the girls’ race, Rebaka Starwalt of Byron was the top finisher on the 2.9-mile course in a time of 20:08. Lauren Althaus (21:02) of Amboy was next followed by teammate Elly Jones (21:12.04).

Mendota’s top finish belonged to Jamie Dooley, who was 12th in a time of 23:52. Other finishes for the Lady Trojans were Alayna Nosalik (24:02), Bianka Valdez (25:02), Nataliya Durbin (26:59) and Val Valdes (27:12).

Byron’s girls (26) edged out Amboy (30), while Mendota carried 73 points.

In the boys’ run, Amboy’s team took the top five finishes with Brock Loftus (16:11), Ian Eller (16:23), Kyler McNinch (17:12), Charlie Dickenson (17:58) and Andrew Jones (18:05.0).

The first Trojan runner to cross the finish line was Andrew Stamberger (18:05.6), who broke up the string of Clippers with a sixth-place finish. Also competing for Mendota were Trent Stamberger (8th, 18:29), Alex Hermosillo (9th, 18:36), Ty Connelly (11th, 18:47), Dagen Setchell (14th, 20:03), Eli Arjes (16th, 20:16), Billy Hall (20th, 20:20) and Rose Fouke (26th, 23:11).

Amboy won the meet with 15 points, followed by Mendota with 47 and Byron with 77.

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MHS runners assembled for the LaSalle County Invitational on Oct. 3 at Streator.

In the girls’ race, Seneca took the team title with 34 points, followed by Ottawa (50), LaSalle-Peru (71), Streator (86) and Marquette (109). Mendota did not have a team scored.

Nosalik was the first Lady Trojan to cross the finish line in 18th place with a time of 23:36. Dooley checked in next (22nd, 24:10), followed by Bianka Valdez (25th, 24:47) and Val Valdez (37th, 27:32).

Ottawa’s Grace Carroll broke the tape with a winning time of 19:36.

The Mendota boys scored 92 points and finished in fourth place. Ahead of them were Seneca (48), L-P (60) and Streator (91). Marquette was fifth with 97 points and Earlville did not score.

The Trojans sent seven runners out on the course and Andrew Stamberger was the first back in with a time of 17:58, which was good enough for ninth place. Finishing 17th through 19th were Hermosillo (18:43), Connelly (18:55) and Trent Stamberger (18:57). Rounding out the Mendota lineup were Setchell (33rd, 20:12), Hall (34th, 20:17) and Arjes (36th, 20:45).

Lucas Hoffman of Marquette took top honors in a time of 16:13.

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