The West Delaware girls cross country team saved its best effort of the season, thus far, for their home invitational. The Hawks set 14 personal records on the way to an 11th-place finish at the West Delaware Invitational at Hart Ridge Oct. 8.
Freshman Faith Rich led the Hawks, finishing 54th in 23:55 setting a personal record along the way. She crossed the finish line two spots ahead of Grace Millenkamp (24:04). Faith Litterer was 60th (24:11), Hannah Axline 71st (24:43) and Brooke Lewin 72nd (24:49). Katie McGrane finished 95th (26:13) and Karsyn Welcher 98th (27:07).
Western Dubuque won the meet with 62 points, while Grinnell finished second with 84. Next came Mount Vernon/Lisbon (95), Center Point -Urbana (127), Waverly-Shell Rock (142), Cedar Rapids Xavier (156), Tipton (174), Independence (194), Springville/Central City (218), Cascade (231), West Delaware (313), North Fayette Valley (323), Clinton (328), Vinton-Shellsburg (365), Maquoketa (411), Beckman Catholic (453) and Oelwein (470).
Coach Ben Moser said the times, along with his team getting healthy, are a testament to his team never giving up.
“We have been telling the girls that their times are going to start dropping, just trust in their training and it’ll happen. We had 14 personal records and two or three others that were close. Faith Rich ran a heck of a race. Something else that is very promising for us is that we are finally almost completely healthy. The story of our season had been injuries and it was great to see those girls out there finally competing. Our focus now turns to the WaMaC meet on Thursday. We are fortunate enough to be able to host it this season and the girls are excited to have another race in front of our home crowd and on a familiar course. Our goal is to move up the standings from where we were last year. I think these girls are ready to go and I’m anxious to get out there.”
In the JV race, Lucy Loecke ran 22:44 to finish second, leading the Hawks to a third-place team finish. Brigid McMahon also claimed a top 10 finish, taking seventh in 23:29. Gracie Weeks ran 24:19 and finished 16th. Jadyn Werner took 24th (24:29) and Jasmine Tran 40th (25:32).
Western Dubuque also won the JV team race with 37 points. Mount Vernon/Lisbon was second with 51, followed by the Hawks (89). Next was Grinnell (100), Waverly-Shell Rock (150), Center Point-Urbana (154), Cedar Rapids Xavier (155), Clinton (169) and Independence (222).
Other Hawk runners and their times were: Isabelle Willey (27:07), Gabby Schuman (27:32), Macie Putz (27:45), Sylvie Mersch (28:16), Kaleah Carter (28:24), Cayleigh Painter (28:41), Katelin Ante (28:46), Becca Farmer (28:49), Alexis McTaggart (28:55) and Allison Mullen (32:31).