Stanton County girls end Ellinwood’s reign of regional runs
Ellinwood winning a regional cross country title is just a given. The reigning 2A champion Lady Eagles entered Saturday morning’s Class 2A regional as winner of 10-straight regional championships. Stanton County, however, entered the race as a clear favorite. In the end it was no contest: Stanton County cruised to the title with 26 points. Oakley placed second with 60 points, and Ellinwood finished third with 67 points.
“You can’t win a meet just with your top two or three girls,” said Stanton County freshman Suzanne Farnham. “You need your back end to push in. It’s like a race within a race, our coach says.”
Trego Community finished second at state a year ago behind individual champion Helen Giefer. She has graduated but senior Sybil Giefer, a third-place finisher at state last fall, picked up the slack to win the race in 19:04.77. Stanton County freshman Chesney Peterson, seeing Giefer for the first time, picked up the silver in 19:13.50.
“I was coming in to see how she runs just because I haven’t gotten to run against a girl at her level yet this season,” said Peterson. “It was kind of interesting just to see how she runs for state.”
Ellinwood junior Erin Hammeke, the fourth-place 2A finisher in 2018, won the bronze in 19:21.13. Ellis freshman Madelyn Russell placed fourth in 19:32.39, and Farnham capped the top-five for Stanton County in 19:32.41.
All five Lady Trojan scorers landed in the top-16. Junior Peyton Peterson finished seventh in 21:13.45, junior Yessenia Ornelas ran ninth in 21:40.71, and junior Jordyn Tucker crossed in 22:51.13 for 16th.
Hoxie junior Emily Diercks had a nice race in sixth with a time of 20:23.61. Oakley senior Danielle Allison placed eighth in 21:13.95, and Smith Center sophomore Gracie Enochs completed the top-10 in 21:46.33.
With a win against Ellinwood and Trego not competing as a full team this year, Stanton County heads to state as one of the favorites to win gold.
“This is our first year in a while we’ve had this many girls and this many girls at this level,” Chesney Peterson said. “I’m really excited team-wise and hopefully we have really good individual placings.”
Stanton County boys complete sweep with win
Prior to the 2A regional races Saturday, Maize South brother-sister combo Trey and Alexis Rios won individual titles. Trego junior Wyndom Giefer kept the trend alive, following up his sister’s win with his own title in 16:59.31. Plainville’s Chayse McCullough picked up the silver in 17:23.09.
The Trojan boys also completed the sweep, taking the team title with just 46 points. Ellis finished second with 83 points, and Trego also takes a team to state in third with 94 points. Skyline scored 115 points to finish fourth.
Stanton County senior Isaiah Barrera, a fifth-place finisher at state a year ago, led his squad in fourth Saturday with a time of 17:35.95. Senior Jarreth Carrasco ran sixth in 18:04.72, followed by sophomore Spencer Schmidt in 10th with a time of 18:16.73. Sophomore Ryan Wenman placed 14th in 18:31.25, and sophomore Colton Adams picked up the final team points in 18th with a time of 18:52.06.
Ellis junior Sam Pyle won the individual bronze in 17:23.91, and Syracuse senior KC Giancola ran sixth in 17:49.27. Skyline junior Jackson Wallace placed seventh in 18:06.90, Spearville sophomore Corbin Ricke ran eighth in 18:07.46, and Hoxie freshman Andrew Bretz was the other top-10 finisher in ninth with a time of 18:10.89.