Widewater Invitational Recap


Recap: What a great meet!  Last Saturday definitely showed why this is such a popular course with the runners.  Not only is it a beautiful place to run with a great course, but it is almost inexplicably fast.  Out of 26 Viking runners, 18 set new personal records and three more turned in their best time of the season so far.  It certainly helped that we started off with near perfect weather, overcast and in the 60’s.

The Middle School girls got us started with great efforts across the board. Morgan, Jolie and Izzy all turned in personal bests, with Morgan taking over a minute and a half off her PR going back to last season.  Kayla and Kennedy turned in strong performances in a very competitive field, finishing in the Top 20 and Top 30, respectively.

For the boys, Chris continued his streak with a third straight PR, while Owen tied his PR from the previous week and Evan ran his best time of the season so far (Will just missed his PR, but ran his best time since the Lake meet).  There was some speculation after the Fayette meet that the course might have been short because of the drastic drop in times, but the times at Widewater showed that it was no fluke; these runners are improving in big ways as their training and hard work come together in the races.

Here are the results for the Middle School:

Last Name First Name Finish Place
Barkhimer Izzy 18:48 89
Foster Morgan 16:45 72
Gleckler Kayla 13:51 19
Huffman Jolie 17:17 77
Keller Kennedy 14:16 27
Bryson Owen 16:06 96
Hartzell Chris 14:53 80
Pennington Evan 15:39 90
Thomas Will 17:09 110

The High School races were every bit as exciting as expected.  Any concerns we had about the team getting on the bus at 7:30am and not running until after noon were quickly proven unwarranted.  They spent that time walking the entire course to preview it, as well as cheering on the Middle School runners during their races.  They did a great job of representing our school and our program well, particularly in their interaction with our fellow NWOAL teams.

For the girls’ race, every runner ran a season best, with four of them setting a new personal record. Sarah took almost a minute off her time, setting a new sophomore record in the process.  Trinity was all smiles after a brisk first mile, enjoying her first race back from injury. Ashley and Katie did an excellent job of pacing and pushing each other through the entire race, with Heidi in hot pursuit.  Hannah had a goal at the beginning of the year to break the 30-minute barrier and has been working hard at practice, so it was great to see her not only achieve that goal but absolutely smash it by taking almost three minutes off her personal record!

More barriers were broken in the boys’ race as well. Ben took another 40 seconds off his PR to set a new freshman record, and Phoenix broke the 19-minute threshold for the first time. Kyle, Augie, Tom and Alex all set PR’s as well, but three more boys in particular deserve a call out. Much like Hannah, Gavin is seeing his steady hard work begin to pay off as he took just under three minutes off his personal best. Ashton has fought through some injury issues early in the season and saw his PR drop by over four minutes!  Pete took over a minute off his PR, and in doing so he put on a clinic for how to handle a hill. We have entire workouts on Country Road 16 and up at Heritage Park designed around working efficiently up a hill and then accelerating over the top to pass runners and finish strong.  As Pete crested the hill, he…took…OFF!  He accelerated into the flat final stretch and never let up.

Here are the results for the High School:

Last Name First Name Finish Place
Majewski Alex 22:11 156
Mitchey Jared 22:58 163
Pollard Thomas 21:20 142
Rhodus Gavin 24:15 177
Ruetz Chandler 23:03 164
Schwan Ben 18:09 40
Simon Pete 27:08 189
Smith Kyle 20:03 117
Tipping Augie 21:19 141
Utz Ashton 23:24 169
VanOstrand Phoenix 18:59 69
Fritsch Heidi 26:09 90
Fritsch Katie 24:39 76
Garlick Ashley 24:40 78
Klebold Hannah 27:49 106
Schwan Sarah 21:39 28
Welch Trinith 22:32 39

It’s really tough to overstate the progress these runners have made, but everything you see on Saturdays is the result of the hard work they put in Monday through Friday.  As we enter the final phase of our season leading up to the NWOAL and District Championships, you can tell they are focused and excited.

Full Event Results are available on Baumspage.

Up Next: The Middle School has the weekend off while the High School travels to Pearson Park in Oregon for the Clay Eagle Invitational

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