Runners on the right track
EL JEBEL — Courtney Lippman was plenty happy with her race at the Basalt Longhorn Invitational cross country meet. So was her coach.
“This was a really good race for her,” Glenwood Springs High School cross country coach Mike Schneider said. “This was probably her best race of the season.”
The season is still pretty young, but Lippman’s spot in the individual standings weren’t anything to complain about. Her time of 21 minutes, 52 seconds gave her a second-place finish among 39 individuals at the El Jebel race course on Saturday.
“Our other girls weren’t able to get off to a great start,” Schneider said. “But the kind of start Courtney had put her in a position to do what she did.”
Glenwood, Rifle, Rangely, Montrose and Basalt were all represented at the meet, and Glenwood finished second in the team scoring. Montrose, the only other school with enough runners to field a team, won the team title with 18 points.
Hailey Swirbul of Basalt crossed the finish line first in the girls race in 20:39.
Rounding out the Top 10 individuals among Garfield County runners was Rifle’s Ashlyn Taylor, who finished 10th in 24:13. Glenwood’s Madi Spence (11th, 24:19) followed, with Hannah Nilsson (12th, 24:40) and Carly Setterberg (13th, 24:49) of Glenwood following. The Bears’ Brenda DeLoera (14th, 24:55) and the Demons’ Samantha Wright (15th, 25:06) rounded out the first 15 runners.
On the boys side, Rifle had individuals who finished third, fourth, seventh and eighth to set the pace for the Bears. Brenden Wagler of Rifle posted a time of 17:49, but was edged by a few hundreths of a second at the finish line by second-place finisher Mark Allen of Montrose. Basalt had a top finisher in the boys race with Zach Walsh taking first in 17:42.
“This is a good performance for us early on,” Rifle cross country roach Ben Bradley said. “We’ve only had a couple of competitions so far, but we’re running well. Our kids are growing each week.”
Rifle and Montrose each finished with a final score of 22. The team champion is determined by individual places, and Montrose won the team title because Allen outleaned Wagler at the finish line for second place.
Coming in fourth individually was Rifle’s John Coombs (17:49), with his teammate, Gabe Marbas, finishing in seventh in 18:46, and another teammate, Bailey Rogers, taking eighth in 19:34.
Glenwood’s top finisher was Phillip Hecksel, who was 12th in 20:08. Glenwood’s Alphonse Fischer (13th, 20:17) and Colby Rennie of Rifle (14th, 20:21) came in right behind Hecksel.
The Demons won’t run again until the Heritage Invitational on Friday in Denver. Rifle is off until Saturday when it competes in the Gunnison Invitational.
Coal Ridge boys team takes 11th at Husky Invitational
EDWARDS — Noah Crisler was the top finisher for the 11th-place Coal Ridge High boys cross country team and Mariela Martinez was the Titans’ top female finisher at the Battle Mountain Husky Invitational meet on Saturday.
Crisler clocked a time of 21:47 to finish 39th, and Martinez crossed the finish line in 26:16 to finish 34th in the girls race. Sam Jorgenson (52nd, 22:44) and Molly Mello (49th, 27:22) were the Titans’ other top performers.
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The Coal Ridge High boys suffered their first 3A Western Slope League loss of the year Thursday night on the road at Gunnison, falling to the defending league champion Cowboys 65-45.