By: John Raffel
Clare boy runners off to sizzling start
This could be a huge season for Clare's boys cross country team.
The Pioneers got off to a strong start by claiming the small school division at the annual Chippewa Hills Invitational on August 23. The Pioneers finished the 10-team division with 36 points, followed by Sacred Heart with 48 points.
“The boys packed well and were doing what is naturally expected of them,” said head coach Adam Burhans. “The top five performed decently, but I was especially impressed with the second half of the team. All met or exceeded personal records...and it’s only the first meet.”
Reigning league MVP Jonathan Harper was 3rd in 17:15; Tanner Vida 5th in 17:33; Lucas Combs 8th in 17:52; Hunter Nivison 10th in 18:01 and Brandon Frank in 14th (18:35).
“We have big goals this season,” said Burhans. “We’re taking very smart and conservative approaches to our racing this year. Times, though important, really don’t matter until October. Regionals is simply the meet we’re striving to reach. It’s a long season, and the boys are willing to do the right things to dial down times along the way. This is a good step in that direction.”
Clare finished second in the girls race, falling by one point to Shepherd.
Victoria Harper led Clare with a second-place finish in 21:09.62 while Emily Crowley was fifth in 21:29.40, Lindsay Winter ninth in 22:35.13 and Robyn Stanley 12th in 22:47.45.