Tiger x-country solid on slippery course | SummitDaily.com

Tiger x-country solid on slippery course

BRYCE EVANS
summit daily news
Summit County, Colorado

Trudging through a soft, muddy course with five different water crossings, the Tiger cross country team made a splash at the Horizon/Prairie View Invite in Lakewood on Tuesday.

Summit finished fifth on the girls’ side and 21st on the boys’ in gigantic fields, both large improvements from the Tigers’ finishes in Lakewood a year ago.

“We had some blazing heat – up to 95 degrees – but the kids really pushed through it,” SHS head coach Heather Quarantillo said. ” … Both teams did very well.”

In addition to the course setup – which had plenty of grass, mud and water – the format of the race itself was a bit unique. Schools sent off both varsity and JV runners at the same time, the top-four kids counting toward the team score. (High school cross country races normally count five.)

The scoring was to the Tigers’ advantage.

The girls’ squad had its four top runners all finish within 31 seconds of each other.

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Senior Cali Greksa was 21st out of 331 girls in the race with a time of 23:07. Freshman Katherine Pappas was next in 30th place, senior Julia Hayes was 33rd , and senior Tess Olson was 34th.

“It was great to have four so up-close to the front of the pack,” Quarantillo said. “They all did a great job of passing other competitors at the end of the race … which was great considering the heat and how much water there was on that last part.”

Sydney Stein (87th), Sophie Ferguson (120th) and Ciara Morrison (133rd) also ran for Summit.

The boys’ team, which finished 11 spots higher than last year in the 35-team race, was led by freshman Liam Meirow, who finished 49th (out of 452 boys) in a time of 20:07.

Junior Emmett Bailey was next for the Tigers in 74th place, while Duncan Koehn (131st) and Quinton Bobb (151st) rounded out the team scoring.

Robert Koegel, who recovered from a fall early in the race in which he got trampled by other runners, was in 157th, and Troy Meeker (160th) and Brecken Chamness (166th) also ran.

The Tigers have two races next week on what Quarantillo called “fast courses.” They travel to Dakota Ridge on Tuesday and Englewood on Saturday.

“We’re excited to see how our kids are running in terms of speed,” the coach said. “In this part of the season, we want to see where are runners really at.”