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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Greencastle wraps up XC season at Ben Davis

Monday, October 19, 2009

Greencaslte's Colleen Weatherford stays ahead of a pack of runners in the Ben Davis Regional Saturday. [Order this photo]
INDIANAPOLIS -- The 2009 cross country season will be one for Greencastle to remember -- for the boys' and the girls' teams.

Both teams were crowned the county and West Central Conference champions, while the Lady Tiger Cubs recorded the lowest team score in school history in the WCC meet en route to their first conference championship in six years.

And both teams advanced out of the South Putnam sectional. On Saturday, Greencastle concluded its season at the Ben Davis Regional.

The boys' team finished the day in 10th place with 252 points, but head coach Mike Schimpf was far from displeased.

"Overall, we did pretty well and maintained our times from the past week," Schimpf said. "We didn't have any major breakthrough's today, but we aimed to peak at conference last week and we still had guys cut time at the sectional.

"But we're out here in the elements and got to participate in the regional this year and that's a good thing," Schimpf added.

Ryan Stevens paced the boys with a 30th place finish with a time of 17:36, just 10 seconds away from his personal best. Tyler Hudson was next from the Tiger Cubs with his 46th place finish in 18:03, followed by Hunter Mitchell, who came in 57th in 18:44. Matthew White and Paul Bryan, both freshmen, rounded out Greencastle's finishes with 68th and 69th place. White wan a 20:39 race, while Bryan ran a 21:27.

"This kind of course is challenging because it's so flat and fast and we need more experience on courses like this, but it's hard to find many that are this flat to be honest," Schimpf added. "These last couple weeks is what we have been focused on and we have been successful in them as well. We won the county, conference and advanced out of the sectional -- it's hard to want more than that.

"There is one thing that I do doubt," Schimpf added. "I doubt that anyone else ran an entire freshman and sophomore team like we did today."

The Lady Tiger Cubs had a little more success than their counterparts Saturday, but it wasn't enough.

They finished the day in eighth place with 178 points and head coach Garry Anderson was mystified to what happened to his team.

"I don't know what it was today," Anderson said after the race. "I know it wasn't the conditioning -- that was there. Maybe it was the mental preparation.

"We were dealing with a couple of freshmen and sophomores, and this meet is hard. To have that kind of pressure on them." Anderson added. "But they need to learn how to respond to the pressure."

Once again Colleen Weatherford led her team, but this time it wasn't in the front of the pack -- it was from the middle. Weatherford finished the race in 24th place with a time of 21:00, while Emily Gill finished 33rd in 21:17 and Jasmine Dwigans came in 46th with a time of 22:19. Sara Culler, the only senior running the meet, came in 53rd, finishing the course in 22:40 while Faith Fear came in 61st with a time of 23:27 and Emily Crawley came in 69th in 24:36.

Anderson believed it was a couple of things that had his team at a disadvantage -- the flat course and competition.

"The Cascade Invitational was the only other course flat like this that we have run on, but it was also the level of competition that hurt us," Anderson said. "We don't run against this kind of competition in this small of a group in our regular season. Other than the Terre Haute South Invite that we ran at the beginning of our season we haven't ran against competition like this.

"Yes we have run in big meets with over 300 kids, but down on this level with a low number, it's hard on them," Anderson said.

Even though his team didn't accomplish it's goal of advancing out of the regional, Anderson was still proud of his runners for the season they had.

"I'm proud of these girls. They had a great season," Anderson said. "These freshmen and sophomores really pulled through this year. Sara, Ivonne Martinez and Kaitlyn Murtagh were great leaders.

"And without great leaders, you can't have great performers," Anderson said.