In the first race of the day, Aleigha enjoyed the team's biggest personal improvement. She bettered her time from last week's race on the same course for her best finish of the season. Faith was G-A's first 6th grader to finish, just missing a medal spot. Megan and Madison ran well considering the circumstances and the entire group of 6th graders finished their week-long cross country initiation with an impressive set of experiences and accomplishments to add to their resumes.
The middle school boys felt the exhaustion of the past week setting in, but fought through to finish their races well. Zack had the biggest improvement, cutting 19 seconds off of last week's Gilmore time. Sam was the first G-A finisher for the first time this year, Blake battled discomfort to post a gutsy finish, and Daniel continued his impressive year-of-huge-improvements, beating 18 7th graders and 19 8th graders in the two mile race.
With a much bigger field and some D-1 competition, the 7th grade girls continued their outstanding streak as all three girls earned top-15 medals in the 12-team, 7th/8th grade race. Lauryn engaged in a hard-fought battle at the front of the pack and finished in 2nd with a season-best time of 13:43. That is the 11th best time for a 7th grader in the state of Michigan so far this year. Hannah was 7th, capping off an incredible first week of her competitive running career. She cut nine seconds off of her time from last week. Yet perhaps the best personal performance of the day came from Jacey, who smashed her lifetime-best time and cut 50 seconds off of last week's race. The manner in which she did it was fun to watch, as she made several bold moves in the race and passed several runners down the stretch.
In the high school races, Nathan ran under 20 minutes yet again and earned a medal with his 23rd place finish. For the girls, Bethy ran 1:09 faster than she had all season, Ashley ran the fastest 5k of her life and Rachel had her best time of the season. Gina was the first G-A finisher, running the course 10 seconds faster than she did last week. Sierra ran her second best time of the season and finished in G-A's top five. All five of G-A's scoring runners were in the top 30 of the 12-team meet and the girls' team finished in 4th place overall. Grace ran nearly 30 seconds faster than last week and Megan smiled her way through her second mile before turning it up with an impressive finish. Gina (15th), Rachel (23rd) and Bethy (25th) all left the meet with medals and both Rachel and Bethy met their varsity letter requirements as a result of this meet.
Driving away from this meet was a much more pleasant experience than leaving Comstock the other day. It was a crazy stretch of schedule over the past week, but the team has earned some time to rest and recover. Tomorrow's practice will be light on the legs, and next week's meet-free schedule will attempt to balance a couple of quality workouts with some much needed recovery time.
A shout out is due to our team's parents too. Thank you for driving, spoiling our athletes with food and drink, communicating clearly, encouraging commitment from your kids, supporting the team even when your kid isn't running, helping clean up camp after every meet, becoming professional tent assemblers and disassemblers, spending hours waiting around cornfields to watch your child run by twice, attending four meets in one week, signing out your kids after every meet, helping get bikes to practice, bringing the coach his clipboard he left at school, checking your emails, taking and posting pictures, and being positive and encouraging to the athletes! This is a wonderful group to work with and the G-A cross country team really is more like a family!
Meet Results Team Stats Spreadsheet