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Cougar boys win Little Five at Crawford

Cougar boys win Little Five at Crawford
Cougar boys win Little Five at Crawford
North HarrisonÂ’s Ashton Bosler paces a step ahead of Corydon CentralÂ’s Brianna Norris midway through the girls Little Five meet Thursday afternoon. Photos by Wade Bell (click for larger version)

The North Harrison Cougars and Scottsburg Warriorettes handily won the Little Five cross country meet Thursday afternoon at the Crawford County Junior-Senior High School course.
Scottsburg put four runners in the top 10, while the Cougars put six of their seven-member team in the top 10 slots of the boys’ race.
‘Today, we kind of concentrated on making a smooth race,’ Jonathon Reynolds, a North Harrison junior, said. ‘We made sure our paces were good. We picked it up at each mile, and that’s one of the best ways to get a good training in. That’s what’s going to help us at the end of the season, pushing each other.’
The boys’ race took place first, with the Cougars wasting no time getting runners up to the front of the field. Reynolds and teammate Johnny Guy and Crawford County’s Chase Broughton went to the front to begin the race, and Cougar Josh Guy later joined the hunt for the lead.
Midway through the race, Reynolds and Johnny Guy were well in front with Josh Guy moving into third and Broughton fourth. Reynolds later pulled away from Johnny Guy to win in a time of 16 minutes, 42 seconds. Johnny Guy finished in 17:02 with Josh Guy third (17:09). Broughton was fourth (17:26), and Corydon Central’s Levi Taylor rounded out the top five with a time of 17:37.
‘It’s a race, and you want to always try hard in races,’ Reynolds said. ‘We’re just out here trying to get better. When we work with each other, that’s the biggest aspect of any success we’ll ever have. We have each other to push us. That’s not just races but practice, too. We work together.’
Broughton said his plan was to stay with the Cougars.
‘That’s about my goal every race, to stay with them,’ he said. ‘They’re one of the best teams in the state of Indiana. Working with them is only going to make you better.’
Broughton is hoping his summer workouts, which included running during some of the hottest days of the year, will help reach this year’s semi-state meet.
‘I ran in midday a lot of times because I wanted to sleep in,’ Broughton said. ‘Then it helped me get used to the heat during meets … I want to make it to semi-state at least and then, once I get there, I’ll see what I can do. I want our team to make it to regionals and try to take down Perry (Central) at conference.’
Taylor said he used the first half of the race to pace his teammates.
‘We wanted to stay in a pack the first mile and not just try to catch up to the front pack,’ Taylor, a junior, said. ‘We were trying to keep the team together the first mile. I was going to get them on a pace for the first mile then take off from there. Probably at the two-mile mark I caught back up to them. On a normal race, I would have been a lot closer (to the front) but, since it was a smaller meet, we did something different.’
Taylor said in a big meet he’ll be doing more actual racing with those at the front.
‘I’ll race in the big meets. I’ll race in those,’ Taylor said. ‘I’d like to get 16-flat, around there, hopefully at semi-state. I’m probably at the border (at semi-state). I’ll have to run my best race, just hang with the pack and run my own race.’
Corydon Central’s Brianna Norris began the girls’ race competing mostly with Scottsburg’s Kacy Brenneman and Leslie Collins but later found herself battling against North Harrison’s Ashton Bosler.
At the halfway point, Bosler was in front with Norris just a step behind. From there, Bosler started to pull away, using the hills to gap Norris. Bosler went on to win in a time of 21:15 with Norris second at 22:05. Paoli’s Leslie Smith was third at 23:08, and Brenneman was fourth in a time of 23:13. North Harrison’s Natalie Hollensead rounded out the top five at 23:35.
‘I wasn’t quite expecting it,’ Bosler, a freshman, said of winning. ‘I didn’t know my competition. This was my first high school actual meet, so I didn’t really have a set goal. I was just going for time. I beat my time. The last time I ran this I got 22:35, so I beat it.’
Bosler said having Norris behind her through the first lap was a good push through the race.
‘That helped quite a bit because I didn’t know where she was behind me,’ she said. ‘Competition always helps.’
Bosler said using the hills was the key to winning.
‘Down the hills, speed up down the hills, and I gained a little bit on each one,’ Bosler said. ‘The first lap she was on me the whole time. For a little bit, she was ahead of me.’
Norris said she was pacing with the Scottsburg runners when Bosler suddenly came flying by.
‘I was in first place for maybe a minute until she came around the corner and, swoosh, she passed me,’ Norris said. ‘I was like, ‘Whoa! Now I have someone to pace me’.’
One thing Norris said would help her would be a course that was a little more sloppy than the hard, dry course run at Crawford that day.
‘I’d rather have it snowing or raining or plain cold,’ she said. ‘I like mud. The woods are my favorite part because of the hills. I like hills now because of my spikes. I used to hate them. They just give me so much more traction.’
Norris also knows she will face Bosler again at both the North Harrison Invitational and the Crawford County sectional.
‘I guess I’ll try to stay with her,’ Norris said. ‘It’s something about knowing the people’s names around you. It’s almost like I’m running with my team.’
Girls’ team scores ‘ Scottsburg 37, Paoli 48, North Harrison 53, Corydon Central 94, Crawford County 133.
Girls’ individual results ‘ 1. Ashton Bosler (NH) 21:15, 2. Brianna Norris (Co) 22:05, 3. Lesley Smith (P) 23:08, 4. Kacy Brenneman (Sctbg) 23:13, 5. Natalie Hollensead (NH) 23:35, 6. Leslie Collins (Sctbg) 23:59, 7. Haley Love (Sctbg) 23:59, 8. Sierra Smetzer (P) 24:26, 9. Stephanie Valencia (Sctbg) 24:38, 10. Lexie Strange (P) 25:05.
Boys’ team scores ‘ North Harrison 19, Corydon Central 58, Crawford County 64, Paoli 106, Scottsburg 137.
Boys’ individual results ‘ 1. Jonathon Reynolds (NH) 16:42, 2. Johnny Guy (NH) 17:02, 3. Josh Guy (NH) 17:19, 4. Chase Broughton (CC) 17:26, 5. Levi Taylor (Co) 17:37, 6. Kyle Chesser (NH) 17:46, 7. Jason Head (NH) 17:48, 8. Ryan Foster (NH) 17:50, 9. Cody Carlton (CC) 18:10, 10. Tyler Love (Co) 18:29.