Port girls, boys make most of first 2010 run at Tendick by securing runner-up honors in invite; Paul shines for CG-B girls
How much advantage cross-country teams have running on a home course is debatable, but there’s no question the Port Washington Pirates made the most of their first chance to do so this season.
The host Pirates got runner-up performances from their girls’ and boys’ squads in the annual Port Washington Invitational at Tendick Park in Saukville on Oct. 7.
Led by Bianca Benkley’s 10th-place finish, the Port girls scored 94 points, just three behind champion West Bend West in a 15-team field. Rounding out the top five teams were Cedarburg (113 points), Germantown (149) and Slinger (152).
Among other local squads, Cedar Grove-Belgium placed seventh (186), and Ozaukee was 15th (437).
“It was a nice finish for us,” Port girls’ coach Joe Adamak said. “We ran well in a field that had a number of good teams.”
Benkley, a sophomore, turned in a 4,000-meter time of 15 minutes, 50.7 seconds. Among her teammates, Ashley Hilton finished 12th (15:51.4), followed by Diana Seer in 14th (15:59.5), Payton Greisch in 28th (16:39.2), Allison Hilton in 30th (16:41.1) and Bonnie Allen in 43rd (17:08.7).
Seer and Allison Hilton both turned in personal-best times.
The girls’ race was won by Cedarburg’s Haley Bauer in 14:53.5. Plymouth’s Haley Johnson was second in 15:03.6.
Cedar Grove-Belgium was again led by Marina Paul, whose personal-best time of 15:20.6 was good for fifth place. Paul was the only senior among the top 10 runners.
The Rockets’ other scoring finishers were Kiera Depies in 19th (16:09.3), Erika Meinen in 23rd (16:28.9), Chloe Paul in 70th (18:11.1) and Tammi Del Ponte in 74th (18:16.8).
Also for Cedar Grove-Belgium, Carina Deppiesse took 95th (19:10.2), and Maria Schueller was 97th (19:48.0).
Rockets coach Ron Wood was impressed with his team’s showing against squads from larger schools.
“I thought they responded well,” Wood said.
“There was some big-time competition. It was good to see some of the big teams and step it up to compete with them.”
Ozaukee was led by senior Sarah Brown, who placed 67th (18:05.4). The Warriors’ other finishers were Amanda Lallensack in 96th (19:31.2), Annalena Feix in 102nd (21:29.2), Marissa Thill in 103rd (21:30.3) and Carissa Conine in 104th (21:48.9).
“It was another tough week for Ozaukee cross country,” Warriors coach Chris Raisbeck said.
“We are battling against the cold and flu season. We had two runners (Ali Hughes and Amanda Nordby) from the girls’ team that were out sick for multiple days.”
The Port boys were paced by Justin Fote’s seventh-place effort and scored 75 points, trailing only Brookfield East (62). West Bend West finished a distant third with 132 points, and Plymouth (148) and Appleton East (165) were fourth and fifth, respectively.
Cedar Grove-Belgium was sixth (171), and Ozaukee had only two runners.
“It was a pretty good performance,” Port boys’ coach Mark Pasten said of his team’s effort. “We went out with a pack mentality and tried to stay together, but that didn’t work so well.
“In the end, we had some solid individual efforts that kept us up in the standings.”
Fote, a senior, finished with a 5,000-meter clocking of 17:21.1 and led the Pirates for the first time this season.
“Justin had a really good race. We’ve had several different runners lead us this season, which shows that we have a number of good options,” Pasten said.
The Pirates’ other scoring finishers were Jake Verfuerth in 11th (17:23.1), Jared Sandlin in 15th (17:32.9), Brandon Hinneberg in 20th (17:46.4), Jason Marhal in 22nd (17:50.5). Augie Yates placed 30th (18:04.2) and Jared Burris was 37th (18:15.9).
Senior Joel Merritt was Cedar Grove-Belgium’s fastest runner with a 14th-place time of 17:25.9. The Rockets’ other scoring finishes came from Alex Holle in 18th (17:38.0), Richard Beabout in 26th (17:59.5), Brandon Krauska in 56th (18:42.1) and Mike Merritt in 59th (18:49.8).
Also for Cedar Grove-Belgium, Josh Beaudry was 82nd (19:27.5), and Al Murphy was 83rd (19:31.6).
For Ozaukee, Doug Grimm placed 91st (19:47.0), and Vince Cardarelle was 107th (21:58.4).
Team champions in the junior-varsity portion of the meet were the Port boys (34 points) and West Bend West girls (23).
The Pirates’ David LeBlanc won the JV boys’ individual title (18:14.3). The top JV girl was West Bend West’s Taylor Uebersetzig (16:55.4).
This Saturday, Port Washington and Grafton will return to Tendick Park for the North Shore Conference meet at 10 a.m.
The Whitefish Bay girls and Germantown boys are the defending team champions.
Cedar Grove-Belgium and Ozaukee will run in the Central Lakeshore Conference meet at 4:15 p.m. Thursday at Sheboygan Lutheran.
The Cedar Grove-Belgium boys and girls will defend their CLC team titles.
ASHLEY HILTON placed 12th for the Port Washington girls in their runner-up finish at last week’s Port Invitational.
BRANDON HINNEBERG of Port Washington finished 20th in the boys’ 5,000-meter race at the invitational. Photos by Sam Arendt