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Lovell , Wyoming
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October 29, 2015     Lovell Chronicle
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Caldwell run BY DAVID PECK Lovell senior Jaclyn Caldwell wrapped up a suc- cessful cross country ca- reer at LHS with her third straight top-10 finish at the Wyoming State Cross Coun- try Meet at the VA Hospital grounds in Sheridan Satur- day, the last two years com- ing at the competitive Class 3A level. Caldwell moved up one place to ninth this year af- ter placing 10th a year ago, running a time of 20:12.95 Saturday. Running in the last race of the day, 3A girls times were a bit slow- er this year than last, which Lovell coach Caleb Sanders attributed to the athletes “waiting around” for the oth- er races to be run. Caldwell ran a time of 19:59.39 as a junior on the same course but finished one spot lower. “I think the reason the girls were slower is that they had to wait around like in a track meet for the dis- tance races,” Sanders said. “The boys times were fast, I thought. “Jaclyn ran really good, excellent. To go from 10th at Regionals to ninth at State, she beat some girls who beat her last week. She ran way better at State.” Sanders said Caldwell looked strong throughout the race. “She described herself as feeling good the whole race,” he said. “She was fol- lowing a group, then passed the group, which“ is not something I normally see out of Jaclyn. She start- ed fast and finished strong. I was really excited about Jackie.” Caldwell would have placed third in Class 2A with her time. Also running well was sophomore sister Jessica Caldwell, who placed 36th in the field of 90 top runners with a time of 21:53.97. “I’ll take that time,” Sanders said. “She Would have been all-state (top 10) in 2A. She ran really good. She’s been consistent all S , DAVID PECK Ben Cornia (left) and Kyle Wolving'ton at the head of pack during the 2A boys state croSs country race Saturday in Sheridan. Both sophomores ran personal-record times at the state meet. year. Both she and Jackie had good seasons.” The third runner for Lovell was senior Caitlyn Lundberg, who placed 80th with a time of 26:02.97, and fourth was junior Savannah Jolley, who finished 85th at 26:36.35. “I was happy with Cait- lyn and Savannah,” Sand- ers said. “I was proud of the effort Savannah put in all year, her first season of CHRONICLE 01' Lovell sophomore Jessica Caldwell was the second ' Lovell runner to cross the finish line behind her all-. t October 29, 2015 lThe Lovell Chronicle l9 to third tright all-state DAVID PECK state lsister Jaclyn during the Class 2A girls state cross f‘country race Saturday. Jessica ran a time of 21:53.97. cross country.” Freshman Megan Cor- nia finished 86th at 26:58.98, senior Afton George 87th at 27:27.23. “Afton was work- ing through some inju- ries,” Sanders said. “I was proud of the girls in gener- al. Cross country is a hard sport It’s an internal, not external sport. The kids fo- cus on what they can do themselves.” The Lovell girls placed \ 12th in the final team stand- ings with 279 points, ahead of Torrington and just be- hind Lander. BOYS RESULTS Senior Jacob Newman was Lovell’s top finisher in the 3A boys race, placing 15th with a time of 17:27.16, a minute faster and 11 plac- es better than his finish a year ago. finish “I was pleased with Ja- cob and his finish to the sea- son,” Sanders said. “Mental- ly, he sees himself as a miler and an 800 guy. He’s been fighting that, but he finished strong. He was happy with it. He wanted to be all-state, but we were happy. He did everything he could to make it happen. That was reward- ing. You go home without any regrets. He would have been third in 2A.” Next on the Lovell team was sophomore Brent Sny- der, who finished 50th in the 100-runner field with a time of 18:56.20. “Brent ran faster than he ran on the same course in September,” Sanders not- ed. “He described being bot- tlenecked at the beginning Saturday.” Sophomores Ben Cor- nia and Kyle Wolvington finished 76th and 77*, re- spectively, with times of 20:03.48 and 20:15.22. “Those are both PRs,” Sanders said. “I was glad they did that.” Freshman Hunter Steenbakkers finished 89th with a time of 21:34.70, freshman Brenden Lund- berg 97th at 23:15.53 and junior Kyle Burton 98th at 23:25.66. “Hunter had a great season,” Sanders said. “I was very happy with him. I was happy with Kyle and Brenden. Kyle got a PR. “It was a good meet — perfect weather. I loved it.” The Lovell boys placed 12th Saturday with 300 points, ahead of Wheatland and Rawlins and 12 points behind Douglas. Twomey tap 10 at stateCrOSS country again BY DAVID PECK The Rocky Mountain cross country team wrapped up a successful 2015 sea- son with some strong per- formances on a picture per- fect day at the Class 2A State Meet held at the Wyo- ming VA Hospital grounds in Sheridan. Junior Dominic Nom- ey earned all-state honors for the second straight season by placing 10th with a time of 18:23.30 after running 18:25.82 a year ago. Tw0m- ey placed sixth last year af- ter a 16th-place finish as a freshman. The Rocky boys fin- ished fifth as a team with 84 points, ahead of Bums/Pine Bluffs and behind champion Wyoming Indian, Saratoga, Wright and Lyman. “Four runners who ran most of the meets with us this year were unable to fin- ish the season,” Rocky coach . John Bernhisel said. “They were four of my top six run- ners. That was a disappoint— ment, but those individuals who went worked hard the whole season and I thought ran as well as they could on that day. “Sheridan is a pretty tough course, with a lot of up-hills that are deceptively difficult. To try and compare times with the conference meet is difficult.” Bernhisel said he is proud of Twomey’s effort Saturday. “Dominic has been run- ning with a hip injury (tendi- nitis) for about three weeks,” Bernhisel said. “I really ad- mire him for gutting it out through that injury. The con- ference meet was the best race of his life. “Also Saturday he twist- ed his ankle about halfway through the race. I’m thrilled that he got 10“‘. It’s a credit to Dominic. His hip bothered him a ton. He deserved to get all-state. He’s one of the best runners in the state.” Sophomore Lathan May was the next runner for the Grizzlies, placing 19th with a time of 19:44.72. “Lathan ran a better race Saturday than he did at the conference meet,” Bernhisel said. May placed 10th at the Regional meet with a time of 19:25. “He was 19 seconds slower on a tougher course. I Wish I had three more weeks with Lathan, because he’s fig- ured out how to race. He’s not even close to his potential.” The third Rocky finish- er was senior Ryker Everett, who placed 36th with a time of 21:00.77. “Ryker also ran a great race,” Bernhisel said. “This was his first year running. He had a great effort, ran a gutsy race. I wish I had him for another year or two. He has talent.” Junior Trevan, Lytle and senior Josh McCrack- en placed 39th and 40‘“, re- spectively, at 21:16.21 and 21:20.30. “Josh. and Trevan ran very close to their conference. times, which is all I can hope for,” Bernhisel said. “I want- , DAVID PECK Rocky junior Livia Higgins cruises to the finish line as the second Lady Grizzly to finish the state 2A girls cross country race Saturday in Gillette. Higgins “ran the race of the day” for the team, Coach John Bernhisel said. ed everyone to have their best effort and finish the race with no regrets. Josh and Trevan did that.” ’ Freshman Kyler Muffett finished 46‘“, covering the course in 22:40.65. “Kyler came out late in the season,” Bernhisel said. “I’m excited to have him for three more years. GIRLS RESULTS The Lady Grizzlies didn’t have any all-state runners, but freshman Grace Wass- mer made a strong impres- sion, placing 17th with a time of 23:34.51. “Sometimes it’s hard be- ing a freshman at the state meet,” Bernhisel said. “They can get a little intimidat- ed and can get a little ner- vous. Grace had an amaz- ing season. She exceeded all expectations.” Placing 24th for the Lady Grizz was junior Livia Hig- gins, running a time of 24:43. “Livia ran the race of the day for our team,” Bernhis- el said. “She ran smooth the whole race and ran the best race of the year at the right time.” Burlington sophomore Callin Preator placed 26th at 25:04.70, just about 10 sec- onds slower than her time at the Regional meet, on a tougher course. Rocky junior Marissa Ar- nold and Burlington junior Pacee Garza placed 30th and 31“, respectively, at 25:43.27 and 25:45.30. “Marissa has been run- ning with a sore ankle the last month. I appreciate any athlete who doesn’t give up, and she didn’t give up,” Ber- nhisel said. “Marissa is one of the best athletes ever at Rocky Mountain, and I ap- preciate having her out for the team. She brought leadership, with Livia, to the team and made a big difference. “Pacee was the only one DAVID PECK Rocky Mountain senior Ryker Everett storms down the final stretch at the state cross country meet in Sheridan Saturday. on the team who ran faster at the state meet than she ran at the conference meet. That’s all I can ask for.” Freshmen Jacque Leon- hardt and Lindsay Tindle finished 36th and 41“, re- spectively, at 26:15.05 and 29:21.94. “Jacque ran so well at the conference meet,” Bern- hisel said. “She ran hurt in this race. I’m proud of her for finishing the race and am ex- cited I can have her for three more years. “Lindsay works hard. She improved her time by eight minutes in the course of the season. That’s all I can ever hope for. She never missed practice and did her best.” ; The Lady Grizzlies placed sixth as a team with 88 points, well ahead of Tongue River and 18 points behind Saratoga. Bums/ Pine Bluffs won the “girls team title. A GREAT SEASON Bernhisel looked back on the successful season, say- ing, “Every year I coach I get a greater realization of the value of school athletics. A]- most 40 years ago, a middle school coach named David Barnes in Fort Bragg, Calif, saw me as a skinny kid who didn’t want to play football and suggested I run cross country. He was ‘pretty cool’ so I went along. He made running interesting. “We ran in mud, along the beach and under the canopy of 200-foot redwood trees. Somehow my love of nature, math and sports co- alesced into a' passion for running, and I have never stopped and it has changed my life.” Bemhisel’s enthusiasm is passed on to his team. “As a coach, my prima- ry goal is to make running fun,” he said. “Besides my own children, my legacy in life will be all the runners I’ve helped create. I still get e-mails from excited former runners I coached 25 years ago that tell me they’ve run their first marathon or that their children are now run- ning cross country. Each con- tact motivates me even more as a coach. “This year’s team has been amazing to work with. They put up with cac- tus in their feet, muddy shoes and running along riv- ers and canals all over the basin. They worked hard when injured or sick and on days that were way too hot. I can’t keep up with very many of my runners anymore, but I hope that my passion for fit- ness and running like a mad- man down the sand hills will stick with them for long time. “Having great assistants like Tim Jones, Penny Tol- man and Mindy Mickelson frees me up to enjoy the run- ning, great Wyoming scen- ery and to make connections with young people, and hope- fully I’ve changed a few lives along the way. It’s been an- other great season for RMHS cross country and I’m already excited for next year.”