Three compete at Class 2A state race

Julia Nightengale from Goessel
Julia Nightengale from Goessel
Three cross-country runners from three area high schools completed Saturday at the Class 2A state race at the Wamego Country Club.

Senior Julia Nightengale of Goessel covered the hilly and chilly 5-kilometer course in 22 minutes, 32.5 to place 28th in the a field of 93 runners.

The race winner was Halle Johnson of Benning­ton in 19:14.

“Julia capped her senior year by running her best time of the season—by 32 seconds—when it mattered most,” coach Brian Lightner said.

“She also set a course personal-record by bettering her time from last year by 11 seconds. “This improvement is a testament to her desire to be the best she can be and the hard-working attitude she brought to practice and to her running—not just in season, but during the off-season as well.”

Marion Senior Colin Williams nears the finish line of the Meade 2A regional race on Saturday. He finished fifth among 70 runners.
Marion Senior Colin Williams nears the finish line of the Meade 2A regional race on Saturday. He finished fifth among 70 runners.

Senior Colin Williams of Marion and Hillsboro freshman Tristan Reed competed in the 2A boys race.

Williams finished 31st among 105 qualifiers in 18:40.3. The winner was Hadley Splechter of Yates Center with a time of 16:05.

Williams, meanwhile, trimmed about 5 seconds from his regional qualifying time of 18:45, and was about 9 seconds shy of his season personal-best attained at Eureka in early October.

“Overall, I thought it was actually a pretty good race,” coach Dmitry Bucklin said. “I would say that definitely the hills probably got to him a little bit.”

Bucklin said Williams peaked at the right time in his training.

“Looking back at the season, I think there’s always things that (I could say), ‘We should’ve trained like this. We should’ve done this differently or added this workout,’” he said. “But at the end of the day, looking back at the season, I saw him progressing each week.”

 Trista Reed from Hillsboro.
Trista Reed from Hillsboro.

Meanwhile, Hillsboro freshman Tris­tan Reed placed 37th in 18:44.

“Tristan ran a great race,” coach Robert Haude said. “He ran his fifth personal best of the season, which is outstanding.

“I was very proud of how Tristan progressed over this year. His decision to commit to hard work during the parts of the season when it was difficult physically and mentally resulted in him having continued success throughout the season and ultimately having a great state performance.

“I look forward to seeing him grow as a runner next year.”