Loyola Races Well at Flight Night


The Year

Spencer Werner fights to stay ahead of the competition in his 8th place finish at Flight Night.

Jack Garrigus, Editor-in-Chief

Loyola hosted one of the most unique races of the cross country season this past weekend, Saturday the 3rd. Dubbed “Flight Night,” it took place at the Loyola Munz Campus after dark. With blasting music, spotlights, and chilly temperatures, all runners were primed for a great 3 mile race. 

The Loyola girl’s team got the night started. The varsity race began with a very fast pace; the top pack hit the first mile at 5:40.

Loyola phenom freshman Morgan Mackie was top dog for Loyola, who stayed with elite runner (and eventual race-winner) Ava Parekh the entire way through. She finished with a time of 18:06.3.

Sophomore Ellie Grammas and Junior Maeve Norman were a very strong duo behind Mackie, running 18:43.92 and 18:46.36 respectively. Senior Hayes Flanagan and Freshman Erin McCarthy finished up the strong team with times of 19:16.73 and 19:21.42.

Loyola ended up finishing third on the night. Senior Hayes Flanagan had a lot to say about the race explaining, “It was a great night of racing that could not have been done without our dedicated coaches. We really showed our potential on the home course, and I’m excited to see what else we can do.”

The men’s varsity race kicked off at 7:45pm to end the exciting meet. With the large field of teams, Flight Night was the most competitive cross country meet of the season yet.

Similar to the girl’s race, the top guys used their adrenaline to cross the first mile marker at 4:55. The race stayed tight until about the 2.5 mile marker, when Matt Coyle of Maine South and Nick Falk of New Trier surged ahead to duel to a photo-finish to the tune of 15:14.02 vs. 15:14.97. Falk was the eventual winner, and his time came very close to the Munz course record. 

Loyola ran much better than in previous weeks. Spencer Werner, even on an off race, finished 8th overall with a time of 15:44 to lead the Ramblers. However, it was the pack behind him that propelled LA to success.

Junior Aidan Simon along with seniors Spencer Dzyacky and Leo Stanton ran within 4 seconds of each other in a gutsy performance. Senior Michael Solmos capped off the scoring with a 16:23 performance which cracked the top-30 for the race.

Loyola finished 4th overall in a field that included the #1 and #5 ranked teams in the state. Senior Leo Stanton was happy with the upward trajectory of the team. He added, “The strong energy and great atmosphere of the Hill helped the boys to run fast and perform well under the lights.”

The Ramblers are making their annual end of season surge, so it should be very exciting to see how they perform at CCL.