The Wapahani Raiders ran away with the team trophies (boys and girls) on the 4K course at the Winchester Cross Country Invitational at Camp Slingshot last week.

The Raiders won the first five spots in the boys race to out-distance runner-up Winchester, 15-47.

The Lady Raiders placed three in the top five to claim girls title over second-place Lady Falcons, 21-34.

The four-team invitational also included Franklin County and Union County who competed with incomplete teams. But both schools scored big individually in the first outing of the season!

Freshman Esther George led the Lady Wildcats with a second-place finish (20:13) behind the race-winning time (19:36) of Madeline Felton of Wapahani.

“Esther got of to a great start in her first cross country meet of the season,” FC coach Stacey Nobbe said. “I think it’s good way to start the season.”

Four places later Union County’s Marissa Young and Franklin County’s Katherine Apsley battled for sixth-seventh places. The UC junior finished in 21:37 to the FC senior finish of 22:00.

“Marissa’s time was right there for her first year of high school running,” UC coach Phil Cox said.

On down the line, Haley Alcorn’s 24:56 just missed the top 10 and finished in the 12th spot. Juliana Goecke and Rayn Story rounded out the Lady Patriots’ placings.

Following Apsley across the finish line for Franklin County was Moorea Nobbe and Kenzie Rogers.

In the boys’ race, Wapahani was paced by sophomore Nick Cook (14:59), juniors Colton Boggs (15:17) and Payton Baker (15:37) and seniors, Brandon Ellison (15:45) and Drayden Gates (15:50).

A pair of seniors led Franklin County in a close finish for 7th and 8th place in the boys race. Adam Grant edged his teammate Ben Maze by about 3 seconds (16:24 - 16:28). Whew! and Eric Schwab rounded out the Wildcats roster.

The Patriots boys were led by junior Bradley Meadows with a time of 17:33 and just out of the top 10. Jack Hodgkin, Evan Boone and Jack Dodd were also among the field of 22 runners.

“Our boys are right on the money with their times,” Coach Phil Cox said. “With 17 and 18 (minutes), they were right there. I have very high expectations overall for us this year.”

At the Richmond Hare & Hounds Invitational Saturday, Maze was FC’s top boys finisher, placing 23rd in a time of 19:48. Grant was 33rd with a 20:24. Harmon Marshall, after a quick start, ended in 45th (21:31). FC was short of a team finish, Schwab being the last participant (56th; 22:50). The winner was Greenfield-Central.

The ladies didn’t have a complete team either, but George secured 37th place with her 26:52. Apsley was in 46th (27:42). Isabella Thiemann and Nobbe ran 37:51 and 38:11, respectively. East Central won the meet.
The Rushville Invitational is Saturday.

Winchester Community High School Cross Country Invitational 4K girls team placings: Wapahani 21, Winchester 34, Franklin County (4 runners), Union County (4 runners).

Girls Top 10 individuals: M.Felton, Wapahani, 19:36; George, Franklin County, 20:13; Neal, Wapahani, 20:46; K.Felton, Wapahani, 21:12; Mote, Winchester, 21:33; Young, Union County, 21:37; Apsley, Franklin County, 22:00; Lacy, Winchester, 22:49; Kirklin, Wapahani, 23:17; Rogers, Winchester, 24:12. 22 Runners.

Franklin County girls placings, times: Esther George (2nd) 20:13, Katherine Apsley (7th) 22:00, Moorea Nobbe (16th) 27:17, Kenzie Rogers (22nd) 29:36.
Boys Top 10 individuals: Cook, Wapahani, 14:59; Boggs, Wapahani, 15:17; Baker, Wapahani, 15:37; Ellis, Wapahani, 15:45; Gates, Wapahani, 15:50; Moystner, Winchester, 16:00; Shrock, Wapahani, 16:23; Grant, Franklin County, 16:24; Maze, Franklin County, 16:28; Keen, Winchester, 16:29. 22 Runners.

Franklin County Boys times: Adam Grant (8th) 16:24; Ben Maze (9th) 16:24; Eric Schwab (17th) 18:46.