If the cross country course at Waterloo’s Firemen’s Park is anything, it’s challenging. Runners from seven schools participated in Thursday’s Capitol Conference Invitational and found out just how treacherous the 5,000-meter layout was.

“There’s a lot of turns, that’s what everybody was talking about, but it’s challenging which is what you want to do to the runners at this portion of the season,” said Waterloo head coach Gabe Haberkorn.

The Deerfield/Cambridge boys and Lake Mills girls claimed team titles in what was deemed an invitational, as the Capitol Conference is not sponsoring a conference meet this season as not all the league’s teams are competing during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Marshall had both the highest team finish and highest individual finish among area schools. The Cardinal boys placed fourth, while Marshall senior Mya Andrews earned a top-10 finish.

Andrews, one of only two Marshall girls competing, covered the 5K course in 22 minutes, 40.23 seconds to finish in seventh place.

“Mya and our other senior girls have really been such leaders; the girls team is really such a cohesive group and they are so supportive of one another, and that starts with your leaders like Mya, Jazmin (Antonio Reyes) and Maeve (Hall),” said Marshall head coach Laura Grossman.

Marshall’s other female runner, freshman Isabella Hellenbrand, ran a 26:19.68 to place 29th.

“Isabella had a great race, too. She improved her time by almost 30 seconds from the last time she ran the course,” Grossman said.

Added Grossman: “We are hoping all of the girls are going to run next Tuesday at subsectionals. … Hopefully everyone is ready and that this will be the first time this year that we have a team score.”

The Marshall boys actually tied Lakeside Lutheran with 112 points, but earned the tie-breaker as they had a sixth runner while the Warriors only raced five. Freshman Jaxon Hornby had the highest finish as his 19:07.57 performance landed him in 14th place among 44 runners.

“Although I was hoping for third, this is about where I thought the boys team would finish,” Grossman said. “Jaxon has been a very valuable addition to the team; I always knew he had a lot of potential as a runner.”

Also earning a top-20 finish was junior Justin Grady (16th, 19:26.62).

“I can not think of a bad race he has had,” said Grossman of Grady. “Today was no exception. He ran a solid race.”

Rounding out the Cardinals’ scoring were seniors Ethan Jennings (25th, 20:08.10), Logan Kosbau (27th, 20:13.24) and Mason Haberkorn (30th, 20:39.07).

Sophomore Tyler Peterson, Marshall’s sixth runner, ran a 22:25.90 to finish 44th.

Seniors Kobe Grossman and Reece Collins will race in subsectionals, making the Cardinals much stronger.

The Waterloo girls (173 points) finished sixth while the Pirate boys (188) placed seventh.

Sophomores Julia Asik (33rd, 26;51.12) and Maddie Webster (35th, 27:28.15) led the Pirate girls, while also scoring were freshman Cordelia Webber (36th, 28:43.88), senior Jennah Smith (39th, 32:04.70) and freshman Alisa Sheshina (40th, 32:16.38).

Junior Abigail Quamme (41st, 35:44.90) also ran for Waterloo.

Freshman Reina Degler, the Pirate girls top runner, was held out of the Capitol meet with a slight injury. She will compete in Tuesday’s WIAA subsectional at Albany.

Senior Jonathan Aguero topped the Pirate boys with a 26th-place time of 28:08.78. Also scoring were senior Maxwell Schneider (39th, 21:45.87), junior Kyle Fugate (40th, 22:01.96) and seniors Andrew Battenberg (41st, 22:04.93) and Brody Tschanz (42nd, 22;12.32).

Also competing for Waterloo were sophomore Jacob Soter (43rd, 22:24.07) and freshman Cameron Tschanz (46th, 23:34.45).

“The boys team has a chance to get through to sectionals,” said Haberkorn. “We’re looking forward to it and I think we’re up to the challenge.”

Meanwhile, the course wasn’t too tough on a pair of runners who set course records. Poynette senior Katelyn Chadwick broke her own record (set Oct. 1) by over 27 seconds with a winning time of 19:18.89, while Deerfield/Cambridge’s Zach Huffman crushed the previous mark of 18:33.97 set by Poynette’s Tucker Johnson with a 17:56.97 clocking. Johnson finished second in 17:58.56.

MIDDLE SCHOOL

Eighth-grader Harrison Schaefer broke his own course record winning the 3,200-meter Middle School race in 13:23.02.

Following Schaefer were Marshall’s Mitchell Pletcher (13:44.60), Waterloo’s Isaac Opsteen (14:31.19)and Brady Ebert (14:45.39) and Marshall’s Logan Ney (14:59.71).

Marshall’s Emma Hellenbrand won the Middle School girls race in 15:32.86.

WIAA POSTSEASON

Waterloo ran in Tuesday’s Division 3 Albany Subsectional and qualifiers from there moved on to the sectional at The Prairie School in Racine Saturday.

Marshall competed in the subsectionals as well Tuesday in Poynette. From there qualifiers move on to the Division 2 Winneconne Sectional Saturday.

CAPITOL CONFERENCE INVITE

Boys team scores: Deerfield/Cambridge 32, Poynette 54, Watertown Luther Prep 82, Marshall 112, Lakeside Lutheran 112, Lake Mills 123 Waterloo 188.

Boys top 5: 1. Huffman, DC, 17:56.97*; 2. Johnson, P, 17:58.56; 3. Garcia, LL, 18:00.94; 4. Weiland, LL, 18:06.66; 5. L. Brown, DC, 18:13.63.

Girls team scores: Lake Mills 22, Watertown Luther Prep 63, Poynette 71, Lakeside Lutheran 103, Deerfield/Cambridge 118, Waterloo 173, Marshall, Inc.

Girls top 5: 1. Chadwick, P, 19:18.89*, 2. Vesperman, LM, 21:04.57; 3. Winslow, LM, 21:18.16; 4. Fair, LM 21:21.08; 5. Habben, WLP, 21:30.30.

*course record

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