Fraser High boys cross country team wins dual meet championship

By: Mark Vest | Fraser - Clinton Township Chronicle | Published October 9, 2018

 Fraser High freshman Nick Borkowski competes at a Macomb Area Conference Blue Division jamboree earlier this year. The Ramblers won the MAC Blue dual meet championship, which was a first in program history, according to coach Kevin Storai.

Fraser High freshman Nick Borkowski competes at a Macomb Area Conference Blue Division jamboree earlier this year. The Ramblers won the MAC Blue dual meet championship, which was a first in program history, according to coach Kevin Storai.

Photo by Sarah Purlee

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FRASER — Fraser High boys and girls cross country coach Kevin Storai gets it.

There isn’t ever likely to be a parade to celebrate an accomplishment or tailgates prior to a meet.

But despite not drawing the same attention as other sports, Storai wants those who choose to participate in Fraser’s cross country program to find value in being part of it.

A good way to do that is to accomplish something that’s never been done before, which is exactly what the Ramblers’ boys team did by winning a Macomb Area Conference Blue Division dual meet championship.

Fraser went 28-0 in dual meet competition.

According to Storai, it’s the first dual or division meet championship for boys or girls in program history.

“It was a big deal,” Storai said. “That was really special. It’s part of a building block.”

Storai is a 2004 Fraser graduate and is in his first season leading the program. He knew what was at stake even before the Ramblers secured a championship.

“We looked at what hasn’t been done, what we could do to get there, and be able to start that process,” Storai said.

Storai isn’t the only one who wanted something different for Fraser this year.

“We were looking to definitely change the culture at Fraser, get guys excited for (the) season and running, and progress the program,” said junior Joey Tavalieri. “We were excited.”

Although it wouldn’t be a first, there’s something else Storai would like to help the program achieve during his tenure.

“Long term what the goal is, is we (want to) get to a state finals,” he said. “There’s only been one boys team ever to make a state (final). That was 1986,” he said. “On the girls side, we’re still building. … They’ve never won a MAC title either. Ideally, we’d like to win a MAC title as well.”

Storai may not have to work too hard on selling the idea of going after big goals to junior Brendan Cairney.

“There’s big plans for the program,” Cairney said. “We got our first dual meet championship (in) school history. That’s showing something right there that something’s different, something’s better this year. There’s a ton of potential for the future.”

A good source of motivation for accomplishing more big things for the program could be via having a record board in the school’s athletics wing.

Although there’s not one there now for cross country, there is a possibility that there could be one after this season.

“Not having that board, I think, kind (of) hurts us,” Storai said. “It really does make a difference when kids see up there. ‘Oh man, I can beat that kid. I can totally be No. 7 in school history,’ or whatever. So, it’s a little bit motivating.”

Some big upcoming events for Fraser include the MAC Blue division meet Oct. 18 at Lake St. Clair Metropark and a Division 1 regional, which Storai said takes place Oct. 26, also at Lake St. Clair Metropark.

Regardless of how things go, coming away from the season with at least one championship may have gone a long way toward helping Storai establish a winning culture for the program.

“Growing quickly,” he said of the state of the program. “We’re in a good place. Have a lot (of) upward growth here coming soon.”

Call Sports Writer Mark Vest at (586) 279-1112. Follow Sports on Twitter @CandGSports.

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