Clare runners sweep Jack Pine jamboree

September 27, 2018

by Ben Murphy
Sports Writer

Clare continued its dominance in the Jack Pine Conference cross country scene. The Pioneers, running at the first league jamboree on Wednesday, Sept. 19 in Gladwin, at the Gladwin Sportsmen’s Club, won both sides of the meet to give them the early edge in both races for the championship.

The boys team were led by a one-two finish by David Good and Jayce Miller, helping them narrowly edge Meridian with 32 points to the Mustangs’ 38.

Clare runners Jayce Miller (left), Kaleb Schroeder (right) work their way through a crowd at Saturday’s Cougar-Falcon Invitational. 

Clare runners Jayce Miller (left), Kaleb Schroeder (right) work their way through a crowd at Saturday’s Cougar-Falcon Invitational. 

“This meet is a reflection of a few things,” boys head coach Adam Burhans said. “Our overall heart and our overall willingness to fill in spots for guys who are a little or a lot banged up right now. We are collectively healing in areas and our will to train smartly is starting to pay off.

We’re hoping to dial things down even more as this is a crucial training phase for us. We’ve got way too much room to improve and we have very specific goals in the upcoming weeks.”

Good and Miller ran times of 17:18 and 17:23 to lead the way, Kaleb Schroeder wasn’t far behind in fourth in a time of 17:44, Alan Winter was seventh at 18:23, Dylan Morrish was 21st at 19:44, Charlie Brown placed 25th at 19:55, in 27th, 28th and 29th were Cole McMillan and Scott Rodenbo and Ted Bell, with times of 20:10, 20:11 and 20:12. William Bell was 33rd at 20:45, Hunter Blain placed 39th and timed out at 21:13, Christian Hitchcock was 55th at 23:27 and Luke Thompson was 61st at 24:39.

Harrison didn’t have enough for a team score but was led by a nice showing by Travis Taylor in

Lainey Veenkant paces herself during Saturday’s race. 

Lainey Veenkant paces herself during Saturday’s race.

12th, timing out at 19:16. Dakota Lawrence ran a 20:44 and was 31st , Zach Chenoweth placed 59th in a time of 23:37 and Tristan Osterloh was 64th at 41:18.

Farwell was short of runners for a team score also and had Wyatt Tubbs place 15th in a time of 19:20. Grant Evans was 43rd at 21:34, Kyle Frost was 29th at 22:41 and Brock Byard was 54th in a time of 23:10.

The Lady Pioneers relied on some pack running, helping them get 32 points. Lainey Veenkant was second place and they had five straight finishers from sixth-to-10th place to run away with the win.

“It was a good start to our conference season,” head coach Kyle McKown said. “This is the deepest that our conference has ever been, with many talented runners across the entire league. We are pleased to have eight girls finish in the top 14, which earned them points towards all-conference awards. Our goal is to build on this performance, aiming for our best races to come in the final few weeks of the season.”

Veenkant finished with a time of 19:07 and in the sixth-through 10th place pack was Katherine Haupt, Kameron Haag, Riley Schroeder, Abby Leigha and Olivia Haring. Their respective times were 21:05, 21:07, 21:13, 21:29 and 21:33. In another pack was Nicole Taylor, Hattie Veenkant and Sofiah Coker, who were 13th, 14th and 15th with times of 22:19, 22:25 and 22:27. Holly Gilmore was 21st at 23:16, Alexis LaPoe was 28th at 24:07, Bri Smith was 29th at 24:21, Katherine Brandon was 52nd at 27:07, Tarryn Winter was 53rd at 27:10, Leah Denton was 65th at 29:52, Allie Boyd was 67th at 30:09 and Aubrey Miller placed 72nd at 34:13.

Farwell finished fifth with 148 points and was led by Alana Gaskill in 30th at 24:38, Hunter Sponseller was 45th at 26:05, Lin Bostrom and Katheron White were 60th and 61st in times of 28;47 and 28:56, Jasmine Warner was 66th at 29:59 and Jenna Wilkerson was 68th at 30:35.
Harrison didn’t have enough for a team score but was led by Aurora Ault in 47th in a time of 26:11, Aliona Heber was 49th at 26:25 and Elizabeth Jacobs was 70th at 32:27.

On Saturday Clare competed at the Falcon Cougar Invitational, held at Calvin College.
The Clare boys team placed seventh and were led by Good in seventh place in a time of 16:59, Schroeder was 24th at 17:28, Miller was 26th in a time of 17:33, Winter was 34th at 17:48, Morrish placd 59th at 18:44, Brown was 76th at 19:24, Rodenbo was 81st at 19:40 and Bell ran a 19:59 and was 87th.

The Lady Pioneers had three runners compete in the Cougar Division. Lainey Veenkant, Abby Leigh and Hattie Veenkant were eighth, 34th and 50th with times of 19:26, 20:54 and 21:44. They also took fourth in the Falcon division, led by Haupt in a time of 20:20, Haag ran a 20:31, Schroeder ran a 20:45, Coker ran a 21:23, Taylor was good for a 21:56, Gilmore was in at 22:48 and Smith ran a 23:19. Individual places were not available in this division.

Clare runs Saturday at the Allendale Invitational and heads to Harrison on Wednesday for the second JPC jamboree.

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