The Women’s cross country won their second meet of the season as they ran away from the Ionia Bulldogs and Potterville Vikings to secure a victory in the renewal of their traditional early season competition.
After taking a year off last year, the three teams squared off at Fitzgerald Park. The Comets won with a score of 27, Ionia was second with 38 and Potterville third with 62 points. “I have a lot of respect for Coach Alspaugh (Ionia) and Coach Brunk (Potterville) and we always enjoy competing against them,” coach Fred Hutchinson said.
The race was a good opportunity for the Comets to get ready for their season. “We always look at these early season meets as a way for our younger runners to gain some racing experience and to become more comfortable and knowledgeable about racing and for our veterans to fine tune their abilities,” Hutchinson said. “I was happy with the girls, I think we showed a little improvement. Our course ran as a more difficult course than our first meet at Portage so for so many of the girls to run as fast or faster than they did there shows we are progressing in the right direction”.
“Jenna Magness and Claudia Baryo ran very well today. I think both are ready to have big years and they are definitely among the best in the area and really, the whole state” said coach Hutchinson. “ They both ran impressive races”.
“ I was also very impressed with freshman Megan Schafer who was our number 3 runner and really, her strong performance helped us to win the meet on a day when her sister Hannah, our regular number 3 runner was sitting out to nurse an injury. Being a little shorthanded today I was a little nervous about how we might respond but Megan and Courtney Hughes in particular, responded with very solid races” stated Hutchinson.
“I was also very pleased with how well Sarah Padilla and Ainsley Vanderlaan ran today. I really see both of them becoming more fit but most importantly more competitive. Especially with Sarah, I’ve been really impressed with her progress from last year to this year and with Ainsley, who battled injury last year, she seems to have moved past those struggles and is coming into form this season” said Hutchinson.
“Our next meets at the Averill Invite and MSU Spartan Invite will be really important for our progress toward our goals as a team. I know the girls will work hard to prepare over the next two weeks and I’m confident that the girls will be ready to answer the bell for those meets”
The Comets compete on Sat Sept 10 at the Averill Invite in the Detroit area and at the MSU Invite on Sept 16.