**Article was written before Class and District Assignments were released**
The Forest Park XC Festival is always one of the largest and most competitive meets in Missouri. This year is no different, and should be a much dryer and faster year than last years mud festival. They did change how the meet is organized this year, with the Varsity division running in the morning and the JV following later, which means we could see some fast times in the cooler morning weather.
For the Girls Green Division (most competitive), there are a whopping 10 ranked teams competing. Class 4 No. 3 Nerinx Hall will square off againsts No. 4 Eureka, No. 6 Rock Bridge, No. 7 Francis Howell, No. 9 Lafayette (Wildwood), No. 10 Liberty, Class 3 No. 2 Festus, No. 3 Herculaneum, No. 9 John Burroughs, No. 10 Notre Dame (Cape Girardeau), and Class 2 No. 2 Fatima. Along with those ranked Missouri teams, will be a very good Illinois team in O'Fallon High School. I'd look for Nerinx, Eureka, and O'Fallon to duke it out for the team title here and there's not telling who will end up in forth with so many teams close together.
O'Fallon's Peyton Schieppe will be a heavy favorite to win the individual title after running a 17:24 three mile last week at the Granite City Invitational. Other contenders will be Allison Newman (St. Georges - TN) who has ran 18:47, Grace Tyson (Lafayette-Wildwood) who ran 18:49 last weekend, and Riley Vickrey (Marquette Catholic - IL) who has already ran 18:55 this year as well.
On the Boys side there are 11 ranked team toeing the line at Forest Park. Class 4 No. 1 St. Louis University High will take on No.6 Lafayette (Wildwood) No. 8 Liberty, No.9 Rock Bridge, No. 10 Rockhurst, Class 3's No. 1 Festus, No. 3 Herculaneum, No. 4 Helias Catholic, No. 9 Notre Dame (Cape Girardeau), and Class 2's No. 1 Fatima, and No. 2 Clark County. SLUH looks to be the favorite here, but they'll need to hold off strong Festus, Lafayette, and Neuqua Valley (IL) teams to do so.
There are some big dogs in the individual race, and it should be exciting. Wes Porter (Rockhurst) who entered the year as the No. 1 ranked runner in Class 4 will be competing for the title and has the fastest time in the last two years with a 15:22. Nicolas Dovalovsky (Neuqua Valley) will also be challenging for the title along with Lucas Rackers (St. Louis University High), Jack Crull (Helias Catholic), and Blake Morris (Notre Dame).
Below you can find the box assignments for this weekend which lists all the teams participating, and a link for the the fastest times ran at the meet since it moved to Aviation Fields in 2015.