Beloit girls place second in Beloit CC Invite
BELOIT – The Beloit Invitational Cross-Country meet was held on Thursday with over twenty schools in attendance. Due to course conditions and heavy rains early in the week there was a question whether or not the races would even be held.
“We looked at the course and the number of runners and felt that the best decision was to cancel the junior high races and continue with the high school varsity and junior varsity competitions,” said Beloit Coach Mason. "Thursday saw bright sunny skies and a favorable north wind with temperatures in the low 60’s, just about perfect for the 5k races. The course was altered a bit to still allow for some good performances. A couple of fairly technical spots gave the runners a challenging course they really needed to focus on."
Runners from the surrounding area came to compete which included: Beloit-St. John’s, Osborne, Plainville, Stockton, Abilene, Minneapolis, Ell-Saline, Superior, Ne., Bennington, Phillipsburg, Tescott, Concordia, Republic County, Sylvan Grove, Sacred Heart, Lakeside, Wilson, Southern Cloud, Lincoln, Tipton and Smith Center.
The first race of the day started at 4 p.m. with the varsity girls competing for top team honors and top 15 individual medal opportunities. Jaycee Voth from Lincoln pulled away from the pack early on in the race and held it with a winning time of 19:09. Ashlyn Harbaugh of Bennington was the runner-up in 19:32 with Beloit’s Hannah Burks taking the third place medal crossing the finish line in 19:46, which was her fastest time of the year. Hayley Burks was 4th in 20:06, a personal best time for her. Also running for the varsity squad included Jenna Balluch in 23:05 for a 17th place finish, Ariana Armstrong 22nd in 23:33, Abby Porter 29th in 24:30, Samantha Zimmerman 38th with a 25:56 clocking and Amanda Noller 43rd finishing in 26:33. The girls as a team took second place to the Bennington girls, currently ranked 1st in class 2A.
“I was very proud of the girls efforts today," Assistant Coach Renee Mason said. "We have some great varsity experience at the front with the Senior twins and some youth consisting of three freshman, we just need to bring it together as we look to finish out the season successfully."
In the second race of the afternoon, Caleb Eilert of Beloit St. John’s, in a carbon copy of the previous race, quickly took the lead and finished with a time of 16:17. Reagan Bales of Osborne was runner-up in 17:04 with teammate Cameron Delaney third in 17:05. Bryce Mason was again the Trojan’s top finisher taking medal honors in 14th with a personal best time of 18:24. Teammates Porter and Armstrong took 22nd and 58th respectively with times of 18:45 and 20:31, a personal best for Tristan.
“I thought Bryce had his best finish of the season coming from the 21st spot to a medal finish the last 300 meters,” said Coach Mason. The Abilene boys took the top team honors, placing three in the top fifteen. The Osborne and Bennington boys finished 2nd and 3rd respectively.
In the junior-varsity race, Abby Vetter earned a 5th place medal in a time of 26:00. Abraham Staples and Cameron Sadler were 15th and 30th in the boys JV competition.
The Trojan high school and junior high runners will travel Tuesday to compete at the Ellsworth Invitational. Thursday the junior high will finish their season at the first contested junior high league meet hosted by Minneapolis rather than running at the Lincoln Invitational as they have previously. The team and coaches thank all those involved in making the Beloit Invitational Cross-Country meet a success this year and look forward to next year.