Macomb County cross country teams, runners excel in regionals
Several teams and individual runners from Macomb County high schools in the C & G coverage area performed strongly enough at various regional meets to qualify for the Michigan High School Athletic Association state cross country meet.
The top 15 individual runners in each regional qualified for the state finals, as did runners from the top three teams in each regional.
The MHSAA state finals took place Nov. 3, after press time, at Michigan International Speedway. See our website at www.candgnews.com for a recap and next week’s paper for more on the finals.
In the girls heat, hosted by Grosse Pointe South, Utica Stevenson’s team qualified for the D-1 finals after placing second with a score of 47 at Lake St. Clair Metropark Oct. 27. Defending state champion Grosse Pointe South (26) and Troy High (97) finished first and third, respectively.
Mott finished sixth with a score of 204; L’Anse Creuse (261) placed 10th; Sterling Heights High scored 333 to finish 12th; Utica Ford II tallied 354 and came in 13th; Lakeview (400) finished in 14th; and Cousino’s team (436) was 15th.
“Things are going the way we’d hoped they would,” Stevenson coach Kevin Hanson said. “Everybody’s running well. We don’t have any injuries or sickness affecting us, and everybody’s running really well.”
Stevenson senior Jessica Gaines, who finished fourth overall in 18 minutes, 19 seconds, led her squad, which last won a state title in 1996.
Several other Titans runners also excelled at regionals, including freshmen Allison Shannon (18:24) and Samantha Hanson (18:35), who placed fifth and seventh, respectively. Sophomore Ashlie Baumann finished 11th after posting a time of 18:44. Juniors Miranda Wolanin (19:15) and Gabriella Oveson (19:28) placed 20th and 23rd, respectively. Sophomore Jenna Anderson placed 31st with a time of 19:50.
Grosse Pointe South senior Hannah Meier won her race after crossing the finish line in 17:16.
Hanson said South goes into the D-1 final as the clear favorite. He said GPS had a few runners out when Stevenson beat the Blue Devils at the division meet Oct. 20.
“(South) is better than we are,” said Hanson, the longtime Stevenson coach. “We can’t worry about them. We just have to handle our business.”
Warren Mott junior Allie Knoll (18:40) finished 10th and qualified as an individual.
In the boys race, Warren De La Salle sophomore Mickey Davey qualified for the state finals by finishing second in 15:33, just four seconds off of the lead.
Three other local runners — Warren Mott senior Joey Przybylko (16:13, fifth), Mott sophomore David Saporito (16:24, ninth), and Harrison Township L’Anse Creuse junior Frank Lauchlan (16:29, 13th) — moved on to the state finals from this D-1 regional, which took place Oct. 27 at Metro Beach.
No local boys teams qualified for the state finals from this regional. De La Salle came closest, scoring 147 points to finish fifth. Royal Oak, Troy and Grosse Pointe South finished first, second and third, respectively.
St. Clair Shores Lakeview (197) finished seventh. Utica Stevenson (249), Mott (251), and L’Anse Creuse (254) rounded out the top 10.
St. Clair Shores Lake Shore finished 12th, scoring 334 points. Roseville (378) placed 14th, followed by Utica Ford II (387), Sterling Heights High (430) and Warren Cousino (482).
Warren Regina’s team qualified for the state finals by winning its D-2 regional Oct. 27 at Goodells Park in Goodells.
The Saddlelites tallied 37 points and had five runners finish in the top 13. Yale finished second with an 81 points and Crosswell Lexington placed third with a 98.
Locally, Warren Woods Tower scored 129 points to finish fifth in the girls race.
Regina junior Cassie Bloch paced the Saddlelites, finishing third overall in 19:27. Regina junior Jenny Ponkowski finished in 19:45 to place fourth. Junior Christina Ridella (19:56), sophomore Stephanie Latos (19:57) and junior Elizabeth Bioch (20:06) finished eighth, ninth and 13th, respectively, for the Saddlelites. Regina freshman Teresa Diehl (20:06) and sophomore Ashleigh Czewski (21:26) finished 21st and 32nd, respectively.
No teams or individuals qualified in the boys heat. St. Clair High finished with 21 points to win the regional race.
Top local squads were Tower, which finished ninth with a team total 254, and St. Clair Shores South Lake, which finished with a 268 and in 11th.
Both Macomb Lutheran North teams placed in the top three of their D-3 heats to qualify for the state finals.
The regional race took place Oct. 27 at Willow Metropark in New Boston.
The girls team finished first in its heat with 33 points, while the boys squad tallied 83 points to place third.
Lutheran North sophomore Gina Patterson won her race in a time of 18:21.11.
Other Mustangs who qualified for states are sophomore Jenna Briney (third place, 19:35.98), sophomore Jenna Cundy (fifth, 20:27.01), freshman Briana Weglarz (eighth, 20:29.84), senior Lori Schwark (20th, 22:13.80), junior Liz Milanov (24th, 22:37.42) and junior Alyssa Wood (25th, 22:39.53).
Senior Zach Weglarz (17:39.41), who placed seventh, led the Mustangs in the boys race. Teammates Aaron Eisenhardt (15th, 18:18.81), Danny Weglarz (23rd, 18:55.31), Zach Stadnika (29th, 19:18.09), Michael Mallon (30th, 19:21) and Brett Hudson (36th, 19:48.18) make up the rest of the qualifiers for the Mustangs.
Sterling Heights Parkway Christian sophomore Taylor Siegle (20:50) finished third in a D-4 girls heat to qualify for the state finals.
Siegle ran Oct. 27 at Goodells Park.
No other local teams or runners qualified in D-4.
For detailed results on the state finals, visit www.mhsaa.com