Jonathan Zygmunt will be a junior at Valparaiso High School in the fall, and once again will be running for the Vikings’ cross country team.

He hopes to crack one of the toughest varsity lineups in Northwest Indiana, as for several years Valparaiso has been known for its depth.

Zygmunt might have taken a step toward that goal Saturday when he won the prestigious 34th annual Hub Run 5K in Crown Point. The 16-year-old posted a winning time of 17 minutes, 03.1 seconds — 13 seconds better than runner-up and fellow Duneland Athletic Conference runner Ryan Kepshire, of Crown Point — to earn his second 5K non-high school title, but first in the region.

“I won the Thanksgiving Day 5K in Racine, Wisconsin (last year), but that was against a much smaller field,” said Zygmunt, who was a member of Valparaiso’s junior varsity as a sophomore.

The Hub Run has the third-largest field of any Northwest Indiana road race with 831 finishers (behind the Ringing in Spring and Popcorn Panic), but it’s the biggest outside of Valparaiso — a community full of dedicated, die-hard runners.

Besides hoping to earn a spot on the Vikings varsity, Zygmunt has some other goals.

“I want to become a better leader and help lead my team to the 2014 IHSAA cross country state meet,” he said.

Zygmunt added he doesn’t plan to run any more races during the summer against adults, but “that could change” after winning the Hub Run.

Two other Crown Point residents rounded out the top four as Cory Vallow was third and another high school runner, Jacob Langbehn, was fourth.

The top female finisher in the Hub Run was Chesterton High School grad Lindsay Hattendorf, clocking in at 18:03.0 (sixth overall). Chrys Davis of Valparaiso was the second woman finisher (28th overall).

Upcoming races

The Firecracker 5K gets going at 7:30 a.m. Saturday in Chesterton. Day-of-race sign-up fee is $25 with a T-shirt ($20 without shirt). ... At 9 a.m. June 29, the Public Enemy 5K takes place at the Lake County Fairgrounds in Crown Point. It’s a 1930s-themed event with antique cars, old costumes and a police helicopter landing. The cost is $18 for adults, $12 for kids, with part of the proceeds going toward local police departments. For details on either race, visit www.calstrider.org.