Runners compete in the rain
By Eric Killelea
Ranger-Review Staff Writer
Last week, in a whirlwind of events, the Dawson County High School cross-country team cancelled Tuesday’s meet due to “heat and smoke” in Watford City. Then, seeking timely competition, the team “loaded up the bus” at 3:45 a.m. Friday headed for Lewistown, according to DCHS head coach Tom Temple.
The falling rain was bittersweet.
“Something unusual for Montana is that it rained all the way over there, pretty much the whole time we were there and the whole trip back,” Temple said. “Nobody was complaining though as we really need the moisture! It did make for a very difficult course for the athletes. Lewistown’s course is quite hilly already and adding the dimension of mud to that made it like a Spartan Race.”
Still, most of the team ran well. Attributing the solid running times to cooler temperatures, Temple said, “Our previous meets have been on the warm to hot side. I would say optimum running temperatures tend to hover just about 50. Lewistown was cool and wet at 44 degrees.”
Senior Emily Kuehn ran her 5K in 20:24.08 to place third among 70 runners at the Lewistown course. “More importantly, she beat some runners she hasn’t in the past,” Temple said. “Also, senior Ase Ackerman finished in 17:33.88 to place fifth out of 80. “For the first time this season, he was noticeably very happy with his finish. He also beat some kids he hasn’t in the past.”
Both Kuehn and Ackerman previously ran slower times than in Mandan.
“But there is really no comparison between the flatness of that course to Lewistown’s hilly, muddy slog,” Temple noted. “This really goes for most of the team.”
Sophomore Justin Skartved (59th, 20:23.01) ran his fastest varsity time, as Logan Alkire (50th, 22:44.13) and Keely Undem (36th, 27:59.05) ran their swiftest junior varsity times.
The DCHS team is scheduled to run at 2 p.m. on Friday in the Sidney Invitational. There, they will compete against Glasgow for the first time this season.
Boys varsity team scores: Billings Skyview, 77; Manhattan, 90; Fergus, 96; Laurel, 124; Park, 132; Hardin, 139; Havre, 155; Belgrade, 163; Dawson County, 224; Billings Central Catholic 234; Custer County, 242.
Ase Ackerman, fifth, 17:35.88; Ben Stortz, 42nd, 19:45.07; Myles Stinnett, 57th, 20:14.08; Justin Skartved, 59th, 20:23.01 (Personal Record); Jacob Parent, 73rd, 21:26.05; Gavin Palmer, 76th, 22:03.12;
Girls varsity team scores: Hardin, 43; Billings Skyview, 90; Manhattan, 92; Fergus, 123; Custer County, 132; Laurel, 151; Havre, 157; Belgrade, 166; Dawson County, 209.
Emily Kuehn, third, 20:24.08; Kasidi Walker, 48th, 25:18.23; Mishal Lucido, 62nd, 26:42.47; Chloe Mires, 63rd, 27:02.78; Alexis Moos, 27:03.05.
Reach Eric Killelea at email@example.com.