CULVER — It was just another day at the office, so to speak, for the Warsaw girls cross country team. The Tigers won their seventh overall and sixth consecutive sectional title at Culver Academies Saturday morning behind an effort that saw all seven Warsaw runners place in the top 14. Warsaw scored 24 points as a team easily beating out second place Manchester (67). Rochester (85), Culver Academies (115) and Plymouth (138) picked up the remaining three team qualifying spots while Triton placed seventh, despite advancing five individuals.
“We were letting them go at it today,” said Warsaw head coach Matt Campbell when asked about the strategy for his team on Saturday. “We’re trying to find our five, six and seven for semi-state. We had some girls drop some serious time today, so that’s going to make our decision even harder. We had some girls that didn’t improve as much as I thought they would and then we had some that dropped 30-40 seconds.”
Allison Miller did what she needed to on Saturday. She paced Warsaw with a 19:53.1, placing her second overall. Miller’s time was only bested by Rae Bedke. The Manchester distance star won the individual crown with a nice cushion over Miller, recording a final time of 19:12.3.
Megan Metzger, a freshman, showed that she’s quickly outgrowing that “rookie” tag as she took third overall and clocked a personal best time of 20:18.3.
Rochester’s Kelsey Tyler broke up a block of Warsaw runners to take fourth at 20:23.6. After Tyler, the Tigers had Angie Sanchez-Vijil (20:25.7) and Remi Beckham (20:30.5) take fifth and sixth, respectively. Mallory Hooks gave Warsaw its final top 10 finisher of the day. Hooks finished eighth overall with a final time of 20:38.4. Rounding out the pack for Warsaw were Lauren Orr and Amanda Herman. Orr took 13th as she crossed the finish at 20:50.8. Herman was 14th at 20:52.7.
There’s no secret that Warsaw is the class of the Culver Sectional, and Campbell understands that. The Tigers will return to Culver next weekend in hopes of claiming their fourth consecutive regional crown.
“We expect it now,” Campbell said of his program’s most recent sectional title. “The competition is not as great here. That’s nothing on any of the teams here, we’re just a bigger school. We have an advantage. So, yeah, it’s expected.
“It feels good, in a way. The regional will be kind of similar, we have that expectation to win there as well. Semi-state is our target. We’re right there in contention right now and we’re trying to find the best seven to help us win a title, which we’ve never done before.”
The Tigers return to Culver for a 10:30 a.m. start next Saturday.
It was somewhat of an odd day for the Triton girls cross country team. As final team results were being announced, the Trojans heard their named called at seventh overall with a 151 points, two spots and 13 points short of qualifying for next week’s regional. But, there was some good news on the horizon.
As always, the top 10 individuals not already on qualifying team would receive a ticket to the regional, Triton placed five girls on that top 10 list.
Baylee McIntire placed 24th overall, pacing the Trojans with a final time of 22:15.1, placing her in the regional. Whytnie Miller was not far behind with a time of 22:16.3 to advance. That time was good enough to place Miller 25th overall. Briana Wilhite ran a 23:09.9 to get her regional ticket. Michaela Best made the cut for regional as well with a final time of 23:25.7. Aimee Gladieux rounded out Triton’s regional qualifiers with her time of 23:50.8.
Abigail Powell (23:51) and Makayla Greenawalt (30:28.9) rounded out the remaining runners for Triton.
It was the end of the road for the Tippecanoe Valley girls cross country team Saturday afternoon. The Vikings finished last among the team standings with 250 points and were unable to advance an individual to the regional.
Haley Hoover was the top runner for the Vikes. Hoover placed 45th overall and ran a time of 24:51.
Valeria Jimenez (24:56.9), Claudia Ramos (25:11.3), Alyssa Bell (25:59.3), Lexi Durkes (27:37.1), Lauren Sponseller (27:37.8) and Abbi Miller (28:38.2) rounded out the times for Valley.