Summit High School’s Dom Remeikis victorious at Cheyenne Mountain Stampede; Teams place 6th overall
The 2022 state cross-country meet is just eight weeks away. On Friday, Sept. 2, Summit High School got its first taste of what the meet may hold when it raced the Cheyenne Mountain Stampede at the Norris Penrose Event Center in Colorado Springs.
The meet is a preview for the state cross-country meet in October and allows participating teams to get a glimpse of the challenging state cross-country course. The girls and boys teams each competed in the seeded race hosted by Cheyenne Mountain High School.
The meet is important to the Tigers because both teams have set the ultimate goal of qualifying for the 2022 state competition.
The Tigers faced hot conditions Friday, but they were aided by the 3,600 feet drop in elevation.
In the boys seeded race, senior Dom Remeikis got his first chance of the season to race against a field of high-caliber athletes. Remeikis went out with the main pack. He ran a smart race knowing that the state course has a few undulations sprinkled throughout.
In the end, Remeikis and Will Brunner from Battle Mountain High School broke away from the rest of the field. Brunner may have beat Remeikis last week at the Battle Mountain Husky Invitational, but a new slate had been drawn for Remeikis.
Remeikis and Brunner fought to the finish line, kicking up dirt in the outdoor stadium, but it was Remeikis who got the better of Brunner, beating his fellow Western Slope rival by a tenth of a second with a time of 15 minutes, 39.3 seconds.
The victory for Remeikis marked his first cross-country individual title since winning the Rifle Invitational last October and set a presumed meet record for the Cheyenne Mountain Stampede.
Additionally, the race also comes within six seconds of his personal best in the 5-kilometer cross-county race.
“It was a very good tactical race,” Remeikis said. “I made the move when I needed to and was able to rely on my kick to get Will. I think that was one of the better races of my career. I am really happy with the time, it sets me up well coming into next week with the fastest meet in Colorado.”
Following Remeikis was Joshua Shriver in 17th place (17:05.40), Zach McBride in 40th (17:49.2), Landon Cunningham in 59th (18:23.9) and Roan Varble in 91st (19:26.0).
The Summit boys cross-country team combined for a score of 189 points to place sixth out of 15 teams.
In the girls seeded race, it came as no surprise that sophomore Ella Hagen put herself in the front of the race after winning the Battle Mountain Husky Invitational the week prior while setting a new course record.
Like Remeikis, Hagen — alongside Air Academy High School’s Tessa Walter — patiently navigated through the course until the race allowed them to truly open up their stride with a little over a mile to go.
The duo raced to the finish line, but it was the sophomore Walter who won the race with a time of 17:50.3.
Hagen followed in second place with a time of 17:53.5, less than six seconds off her personal best from the Desert Twilight XC Festival in Arizona last September.
Hagen was followed by a plethora of stellar performances from her fellow teammates. Lauren McCalla placed 15th (20:05.6), Adaline Avery placed 38th (21:32.8), Avery Eytel finished in 64th (22:26.8) and Cecelia Miner finished in 74th (22:46.2).
The Summit girls cross-country team matched the finish of the boys team, placing sixth out of 15 teams with 185 points.
“This is the first meet this year where we pretty much had everybody,” Remeikis said. “I think for such a competitive meet with 5A teams, and really strong 4A teams, we did really well. It sets us up nicely for potentially getting a state qualifier.”
The Summit Tigers will compete again next week Saturday, Sept. 10, at the highly competitive Liberty Bell Invitational at Heritage High School in Littleton.
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