Cross Country: Junior High Girls Claim KSAC Championship, Varsity And Junior High Boys Each Finish Second (10/23/16)
(By Mark Bettwy)
The UNDEFEATED Clarion Cross Country Junior High Girls team capped their perfect season by winning the KSAC Championship, on Thursday (October 21st), with a narrow victory over host school Cranberry by a score of 49-51. Evelyn Lerch finished at 13:59, leading all competitors across the line with the closest competitor trailing by 43 seconds. Lerch ended her season undefeated in all KSAC meets!
Bella Scott crossed second for the Bobcats at 15:24 with a sprint to the finish with Cranberry’s Jenna Reynolds followed shortly thereafter by Joyce Kim at 15:30. Peyton Simko finished 10th overall at 15:50 with Parker Boyden following in 23rd at 17:08. Grace Adams crossed at 18:30 to take 29th place and Alliyah Dittman closed out the scoring for the Bobcats in 31st at 18:42. Noel Anthony (19:48) Grace Schmader (20:41) Carly Best (20:44) Livia Weckerly (21:10) and Kayla Hiles (21:10) closed out the Bobcat field of runners.
Don Cunningham (13:08) finished 2nd in Junior High competition leading the boys to a 4th place finish. Keagan Phillips (14:20) crossed in 13th place with Gavin Hoover (14:23) right behind in 14th. Kade Phillips took 27th at 15:40 with Cole Stutzman (16:25) and Milton McElravy (16:55) coming in 33rd and 35th respectively. Charlie Franchino (18:08) rounded out scoring in 38th place and Philip Bartley closed out the Bobcat field with an 18:12 time.
The varsity boys finished 2nd in the KSAC behind Cranberry with a score of 31-60. Senior Captain Adam Bettwy (18:02) led the team again by taking 3rd place. Nathaniel Lerch (18:31) crossed 9th with “the pack” taking the 15th – 19th positions. Nick Schill (19:40) Frank Weber (20:01) Noah Schill (20:06) Jim Smathers (20:09) and Marshall Powers (20:12) gave strong showings and closed out the scoring for the Cats. Dan “Kitten” Ketner (20:14) Jacob Smith (20:26) Nate Datko (22:18) and Victor Stahlman (26:38) rounded out the field for the highest finishing Bobcat boys team ever.
Only four varsity girls ran in the Championships this year. Forest Mills (22:10) took 4th place in her first race of the season with teammate Katie Craig (22:30) taking 6th. Gabriella Fleming (25:50) crossed the line in 25th place while teammate Leticia Negri was unable to finish due to an ankle injury.
Full results are available on www.smileymiles.com
Head Coach Keith Murtha and volunteer assistants Bill Grove and Tammy Lerch take the varsity runners to compete next at the District 9 Finals in Ridgway on Saturday, October 29th.