The Poynette girls and boys cross country teams both finished fifth at the Cam-Rock Invite hosted by Deerfield and Cambridge on Sept. 5 to kick off the 2019 season.
“We had a very solid opening meet,” Poynette coach Kevin Frehner said. “We went into the meet with the goal of being competitive for the entire race, which is a difficult task in the first 5k race of the season, especially for 45 total kids in the races.”
The Lady Pumas came away with 118 team points to place fifth behind Wautoma (78), Madison La Follette (79), Madison Edgewood (87) and East Troy (90).
The Poynette boys garnered 149 points to finish behind only Madison East (54), Madison Edgewood (71), Wautoma (78) and Deerfield-Cambridge (85).
The Lady Pumas got a big boost from Katelyn Chadwick. She claimed the individual title after cross the finish line in 19 minutes, 42 seconds.
“She basically led the entire way and controlled the race,” Frehner said. “She is very fit from a great summer of training and it showed on Thursday.”
Abbey Marquardt also finished in the top 10 for Poynette. Her time of 21:31 put her in eighth place.
“She got out a bit too aggressively, which makes maintaining a top 10 position even more impressive,” Frehner said.
The Pumas’ Felicia Ritzke (22:38) came away with 29th place.
“Felicia Ritzke started her career in an impressive way to be our third runner,” Frehner said.
Megan Reddeman (40th, 22:59) and Lizzie Schwenn (46th, 23:15) were the final two scoring runners for Poynette, while Emily Lee (62nd, 24:12) and Mollie Blochwitz (88th, 26:05) also competed in the varsity race. Reddeman earned the team’s Feet of the Meet award.
“Lizzie Schwenn and Megan Reddeman ran super races,” Frehner said. “Both improved by over two minutes from last year at the same meet. Again, it was an example of the work they put in over the summer to get better.”
The Poynette boys were led by Elias Ritzke. He clocked in at 17:09 to place 11th overall.
“He has been recovering from injury, so he was not on top of his game,” Frehner said. “He has been doing a lot of cross-training, so it won’t take long for him to race much better.”
The Pumas had Tucker Johnson (30th, 18:25), Trent Sickenberger (33rd, 18:43) and Austin Kruger (36th, 18:55) run together for most of the race.
“Tucker Johnson, Trent Sickenberger, and Austin Kruger did a great job of working together throughout the race,” Frehner said. “Austin did an especially good job of being aggressive early in the race and taking a chance. The other two guys definitely benefitted from him leading the way for the first half of the race. Austin was picked for Feet of the Meet.”
Trent Chadwick (43rd, 19:08) was the final scoring runner for the Poynette boys, while Quentin Pinheiro (48th, 19:13) and Carter Hansen (50th, 19:14) also represented the Pumas.
Poynette will host its annual invite at Shepherds Meadow Golf Course at 4:15 p.m. tonight.