|Comets host cross country tourney|
by Jacob Lane · October 02, 2013
The West Liberty Cross Country team continues to fare well. After a lackluster performance in Tipton, Sept. 10, the Comets stood out on their home turf six days later.
To begin, all runners from Varsity and J.V. reached their allotted goal times in Tipton. Some runners even beat their times by as much as two minutes.
However, Tipton has always been a rough rival when it comes to cross country in the River Valley Conference' this year was no exception. No one from West Liberty placed well at the competition.
"Normally Tipton is a tough meet for us, but they exceeded my expectations for the meet this year," said Coach Mike Czarnecki.
On Monday, Sept. 16, West Liberty hosted Tipton, Wilton, Louisa Muscatine, Muscatine, Wapello and Mount Pleasant at the West Liberty Country Club.
More than three-quarters of the team exceeded their goals at the meet, including a standout performance by Reghan McNaul. Not only did she win the varsity girl's race by .22 seconds with a time of 16:41, she also broke the school record held by Lauren Roth by two seconds.
Jessica Crook came in ninth place with a time of 18:48 and Grace Millage came in 16th with a time of 20:15 for the varsity girls as well.
On the varsity boys' side, Marco Tena timed in at 19:21, placing 14th, and Austin Goddard timed in at 19:55, placing 22nd.
"I believe we had a little bit of an advantage because we run the hills at the golf course every Friday morning" Coach Czarnecki said. "The River Valley Conference is very strong and as a team we are continuing to improve."
West Liberty's strength remains with its core varsity runners that are dedicated to doing well at each meet.
In preparation for Solon, Sept. 23, they'll begin to focus on speed and less on hills. Solon's course is incredibly flat. Coach Czarnecki is interested to see how his team handles level ground, considering it's mostly dealt with hills up to this point.
Unfortunately, seven runners have dropped out of the team since the season began. The coach believes his team is diminishing as students find out they're simply not mentally tough enough to handle the sport. However, he still believes in his runners.
"I would expect to be somewhere in the middle of the pack as we conclude the season," he said.