Our middle school girls started the day on the fast 3K course, Aislinn Hunter again was our top finisher (11th) and also got another PR. Just missing a ribbon in 21st place was Megan Peck, also with a PR! Rounding out our future five was Autumn Charette (33rd), Mikayla Weiss (39th), and Marley Ferguson (45th). The girls placed 5th over all.
The middle school boys gave up their top runner, Cole Oen, to the Varsity to make sure the Fork was defended. But Chris Demuth moved up and provided great leadership, and used another PR to finish 8th overall. The middle school was missing several of its runners due to the holiday weekend, but other young men on our team stepped up to finish fifth as a team. The rest of our future five was Luke Hoffman (23rd), Sam Lembke (28th), Seb Reese (34th), and Four Cedars Standing (37th).
The JV girls went to the line excited to run in front of the home crowd and did a great job with a 4th place finish. Leading the way with top twenty finishes were Emily Cox (12th) and Meghan Allan (14th). Rounding out the scoring for the girls was a nice pack consisting of Alexia Scott (25th), Jordyn Thomas (26th), and Farruzah Hutchinson (28th). A couple of JV girls also had great races with PR's Erin Peck and Courtney Demuth!!
The JV boys are very inexperienced with 8 out of the 11 boys running having one or fewer races still placed 6th over all. Veterans Cedric Reese (32nd) and Darian Colgrove (33rd) used PR's to lead the JV boys. New comers AJay Hutton (45th), Brenden Swanson (56th) and Joseph Green (56th) completed the boys top five runners. The JV boys are showing a lot of improvement and in the next few meets I really expect to see their times drop!
The Varsity girls ran next and knew they had to set the tone for the battle of the "Traveling Fork". The :"Fork" is a competition between the Red River and Central Cross Country teams. It was started in 2000, the team with the lowest combined score of the Varsity Boys and Varsity Girls. The Central teams have been fortunate enough to have won it every year.
The girls not only had to worry about the "Fork" but also the 3rd ranked team in state Fargo Davies. Just before the race started I told the seven girls to "put on a show for the home crowd." They didn't disappoint, they scored an amazing 19 points to win, with Fargo Davies scoring 63 for second, and Red River girls scoring 165 points in the battle for the Fork. Karly Ackely and Alexis Roehl took the lead and never gave it up to finish 1st and 2nd. Karly broke 15 mins for the second time this year and Alexis time of 15:19 was a PR. Mandy continued to improve, coming off her summer IT injury for 4th, out sprinting Rachel Torrey in 5th. Five seconds back was Rachel Cox in 7th. Grace Roehl finished 14th in 16:22, in front of Fargo Davies 4th runner and in front of everyone elses #2 runner! Central's seventh runner, Maggie Powell, finished 37th in front of everyone's 5th runner except for Davies!! It's great to have that kind of team depth!!
The Central's boys witnessed the girls finish and knew they had to do their part to defend the "Fork". Leif Larsen, made a great surge at the 2500m mark to break away from the pack and win for the second time this year with a time of 16:35. David Hettich (6th) and Richie Osborn (9th) continued their break out seasons with another meet with top 10 finishes. The younger boys continued to improve, Zach Nelson, PR by another 30 secs to finish 30th, and Dylan Foley (42nd) and 8th Grader Cole Oen (55th) used a two minute PR to be the boys 6th runner.
The Central boys scored 88 points to finish 3rd, while the Red River boys finished second with 63 points. The combined scores being Central 107 to Red Rivers 228, bring the "Fork" home to Grand Forks Central High School for another year!!!