Wilshire, Bobcats Turn In Strong Performance At Ridgway Invitational

Photos by Keith Murtha – Above Jonas Wilshire, who ran a great race to finish 5th overall and lead his team to a competitive 5th place finish.

(By Clarion Bobcats Head Coach Keith Murtha)

The first Saturday in October in Clarion typically means ALF week, parade, leaves turning color for Autumn Leaf Capital of the World. If you are a cross country runner or coach it means, Ridgway Invitational!

Ridgway has served as the District 9 championship course for the past many years, therefore the invitational three weeks prior becomes mandatory participation, as District 9 teams gather to see just where they stack up both as individuals and teams. “It is very similar to a college “pre-nationals” meet and something we always look forward to”

You never know what the weather will be like in October in Ridgway, but Saturday (October 7th), it shined! The course was in great shape, temperature was perfect and no precipitation! Not a common occurrence. Last year, runners dodged freezing rain and there is the dreaded “shoe graveyard” on the lower lying part of the course when it is wet and muddy.

Saturday brought some predictable things, like Coudersport senior standout Kevin Sherry winning the boys varsity race in 16:29, as well as a solid Brookville boys team dominating the team competition.

On the girls side, it was all about Morgan Roemer of DuBois, winning in a blazing fast 19:03 followed by Grace Neubert of Elk County Catholic in 19:34. They each led their teams to top performances, the ECC girls continuing to dominate!

Clarion-Limestone’s returning state qualifier Adisen Jackson turned in a strong individual performance in 20:58, for 8th place.

The Clarion team of Hayden Weber, Jonas Wilshire, Josh Turner, Anthony Bartley, Caleb Turner, Wyatt Aaron and Ben Lambert finalize race plans!

On the boys side, Eli Schrieber of Ridgway gave chase to Sherry and took second place overall to lead his team to a 4th place finish. Ty Fiscus of Brookville was third, leading his team through the strength of the pack to a dominating first place finish.

Next was Jonas Wilshire in a well run race in 17:47, for a 5th place individual finish, who led the Bobcats to a surprising 5th place finish.

Hayden Weber had a strong finish for 16th place and Josh and Caleb Turner both showed up big in the 3rd (22nd overall) and 5th team spots (63) Caleb was misidentified as Owen Wilson in the results due to a timing chip change.

The Bobcats as a team are in contention with Ridgway, North Clarion and Elk County Catholic for the second team to represent District 9 at States. Clarion-Limestone and Cranberry are contenders as well. It will be an interesting 3 weeks until the individuals and teams battle it out at the District 9 Championships on Saturday, October 28th.

Josh Turner leads the pack down the hill for a strong finish!

Before then Clarion will face Cranberry in the final dual meet of the season and will be at the Keystone Shortway Athletic Conference (KSAC) Championship to be held Thursday, October 19th at Clarion-Limestone.

(Way to go, runners!!!! Thanks to Coach Murtha for the article and the pics!!)