12 Boys To Watch In The Heartland Region

Aaron Ryan, Aberdeen Central (SD)

Aaron Ryan will certainly be South Dakota's best threat to earn an individual NXN berth on Sunday, not just because of his consistency and number of sub-16 minute runs, but also because he just won a State Championship on the very course that the Heartland race will be taking place on. He started off his XC season at the Augie Twilight Invite with a 3rd place finish and a time of 15:41 (the runners who finished ahead of him were Braden Peters and Andrew Lauer), but he has not lost a race since. He most recently finished first at the South Dakota State XC Meet with an impressive time of 15:31, which was also a PR. He did not run at Regionals in 2017 but he did in 2016 where he ran with a time of 17:50.