Lick Creek School’s Jadyn Gerardi has won an SIJHSAA Class S individual cross country title. Photo provided.

Lick Creek’s Jadyn Gerardi wins Class S cross country state championship

To say it’s been a long time coming might seem a little premature for a 6th grader, but Jadyn Gerardi isn’t your average 6th grade runner. 

Jadyn has been competing at the varsity level since the 2nd grade. She is wise beyond her years when it comes to racing. 

Gerardi finished 2nd last year to one of the premier runners in the entire state. 

This followed a 7th place finish during her 4th grade year.  She was determined that this was her year, and this was her race. 

Gerardi, who is better known as “Smoke” by everyone in the entire Southern Illinois racing community, dominated the SIJHSAA race Oct. 23 at Du Quoin from start to finish, covering the 1.86 mile course at a blistering pace with a time of 11:25.2. 

She defeated Elena Rybak of St. Clare O’Fallon, who finished behind Gerardi last year as well, this year with a time of 11:38.8. 

Coming in 3rd and 4th were Goreville twins Micah and Molly Merrill, with times of 11:47.6 and 11:57.9, respectively. 

Rounding out the top 5 from Pinckneyville 204 was Vanessa Teel with a time of 12:11.1. 

Jadyn Gerardi is a name you should get used to hearing. She is going to be a force to be reckoned with. 

Gerardi will up her competition this weekend as she will travel to Chilicothe, Illinois to compete is Shzam Racing’s ALL State Championships. 

Also competing for Lick Creek was 6th grader Kylee Myers. Myers finished 31st overall with a time of 13:27.9.

The Gazette-Democrat

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