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Pioneer runners sweep JPC championships

By Ben Murphy
Photos By Ben Murphy

The storied tradition of the Clare cross country teams just grew a little deeper on Tuesday at Meridian. Running in the third and final Jack Pine Conference jamboree of the season Clare clinched league championships for both the boys and girls teams.

The Lady Pioneers tallied 17 points to win the meet, giving them their fourth straight league title.

“It shows how hard these girls have been working throughout the season and through the summer,” Clare girls’ head coach Kyle McKown said. “It’s an interesting group this year because we have seniors leading the way but we also have a young group so its been nice to usher in a group of new leaders.”

Farwell finished fifth as a team with 140 points and Harrison came in seventh with 163.

Clare left little doubt in the result, sweeping six of the top seven spots in the meet. Jasmine Harper won the event with a time of 19:10, Victoria Harper was second with a time of 20:32, Holly Pummell was third at 20:47, Hannah Brown was fifth at 21:43, Jayda Sykora was sixth at 21:55 and Robyn Stanley was seventh at 22:13. Madison McPhee was 12th at 23:05, Jordyn Bradley was 15th at 23:28, Sam Gray was 20th at 24:05, Sarah Gray crossed 21st at 24:08, Amanda Yats was 24th at 24:40, Makenzie Harmon was 26th 24:32, Olivia Walworth was 27th at 24:32, Ashley Boulis was 33rd at 25:41, Angelica Krueger was 35th at 25:50, Bethanie Jones was 38th at 25:58, Megan Sheredy was 42nd at 26:23, Hannah Bauman was 43rd at 27:01, Jillian Pappas was 50th at 27:52 and Natalie Fedewa was 55th at 28:25.

“It was one of our best jamborees of the year,” McKown said. “I think it was a race we ran strong in every part of the race.”
Farwell was led by Contessa Hammond with a fourth place finish and time of 21:19, Megan Williams was 22nd at 24:14, Lorena Gomm was 45th at 27:17 and Clarissa Hammond was 61st at 30:17.

Harrison’s top runner was Raylene Ramirez in 11th place with a time of 22:59, Stephanie Prince placed 25th at 24:21 and Andrea Feliz Calvo was 62nd at 31:00.

The three teams will run at the division three regional meet at Delta College on Saturday, Oct. 26. The Lady Pioneers have won back-to-back regional championships.

“The regional for us is always something that is a springboard into the state finals,” McKown said. “We want to be running the best we have been all season at regionals and then even better at state. The goal is to win states and take the next leap at state.”

The Clare boys finished with 18 points to clinch its seventh straight title. Farwell finished third with 101 points and Harrison took sixth with 123.

“The secret to this success is simple,” Clare boys’ head coach Adam Burhans said. “One, they listen. Two, they care for each other. Three, nobody has an agenda. I’m proud of this entire program and the tremendous parent and community support we’ve received all season.”

Clare claimed the top four spots in the meet, behind strong efforts by Hunter Nivison, Kyler Phillips, Kevin Spicer-Torres and Ben Haupt with times of 16:40, 17:02, 17:14 and 17:23. Chase Field came in eighth by timing out at 18:06, Nick Wertheimer was 15th at 19:11, Brock Demo was 20th at 19:40, Mike Wertheimer placed 29th at 20:22 and Scotty Baldwin was 30th 20:22.

Farwell was paced by Daylen Garver with a time of 18:21 for 11th place, Marty Fedewa was 14th at 18:58, Kurt Meister was 18th at 19:27, Damien Brown crossed 27th at 20:16, Garrett McQuiston was 37th at 21:12, Trevor Frost was 62nd at 24:57 and Stephen Conroy was 67th at 28:16.

Harrison was led by Dalton Macdormott with a 10th place finish and time of 18:10, Lukas Oesterreich was 21st at 19:50, Reed Romanowski came in 23rd with a time of 19:56, Kyle Eichorn was 38th at 21:19, Noah Cesal crossed 39th at 21:21, Daniel Yoder was 45th at 21:40, Alan Poole placed 46th at 21:54, Phillip Hale was 51st at 22:23, Kurtis Eichorn was 55th at 23:15 and Raymond Ramirez was 61st at 24:44.

The boys compete in the division three regionals at Delta College on Oct. 26 as well.

“I was highly pleased with our continued team unity,” Burhans said. “We are certainly gelling at the right time and I’m very confident in our ability to strive toward reachable goals. The team chemistry is great and the boys are simply hungry for more.”

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