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Cougars, Bosler roll at regional

Cougars, Bosler roll at regional
Cougars, Bosler roll at regional
The North Harrison Cougars celebrated both sectional and regional wins last week at Crawford County Junior-Senior High School. The Cougars edged Floyd Central by four points in the sectional. Photos by Wade Bell (click for larger version)

Saturday’s Crawford County cross country regional was almost a case of d’j’ vu as the North Harrison Cougars and Floyd Central Lady Highlanders put themselves on top of the scoring column again after winning last Tuesday’s sectional on the same course. North Harrison’s Ashton Bosler and Borden’s Julien Magallanes also repeated with wins individually.
‘We ran well,’ North Harrison coach Tim Martin said. ‘From one to five, we ran way better than we ran the other day. Bad weather always brings out the best in us … We’re just pumped. They wanted to win this one for Curtis (Wetzel) and all that because of his leg or just being injured. They wanted to definitely win this one.’
‘We really focused more on racing the course, attacking this course,’ Floyd Central girls’ coach Carl Hook said. ‘It’s different than a lot of other courses. We focused on hitting the blind spots and surging when we needed to and that sort of thing, making sure even though we were racing Jasper we were racing this course.’
A cold rain and colder air moved into the area before the race making the conditions a bit miserable for both fans and runners, unless you were one of those who liked running in the mud. North Harrison’s Daniel Fleace and Perry Central’s Aaron Pierrard moved up front to start the boys’ race with Magallanes tucked in at third.
The trio led in that order through the first lap, but Magallanes moved up front on the second circuit. The Borden runner went on to win in a slightly slower time of 16 minutes, 26 seconds from his sectional time of 16:15. Fleace finished second, and Pierrard came in to finish third.
‘He had a great race, and I ran the race I wanted to,’ Fleace said. ‘I went after it hard, and he just had a little more than me. But I’m still satisfied with it, not satisfied but more satisfied than last Tuesday.’
Fleace said it was easier to handle the muddy conditions if you were in the lead group.
‘Around the first turn I was still all crunched up but, after that, I was spaced out and I could go where I wanted,’ Fleace said. ‘It was definitely more of an advantage to be in the front.’
Also competing for North Harrison were fourth-place finisher Michael White (16:55), 20th-place finisher Collier Smith (17:42), 26th-place finisher Jacob Faith (17:51), 28th-place finisher Chance Schickel (18:00), 40th-place finisher Tyler Hood (18:22) and 59th-place finisher Andrew Robertson (19:02).
Pierrard said he was hoping to be up front at the end but was happy with the third-place finish.
‘I was trying to go for the win this time but third place behind those two good runners from North Harrison and Borden is still nice,’ Pierrard said. ‘Besides the weather, it was a good day.’
Crawford’s Cody Carlton came in with muddy legs after taking a pair of spills on the course. Carlton still managed an eighth-place finish to reach Saturday’s semi-state.
‘I was pretty worried,’ Carlton said. ‘I thought I was going to lose a whole lot of places. I felt my adrenaline get me and slow me down. It was horrible everywhere. I like running in the mud and everything, but it was bad today. It was fun but it was hard to run in.’
Martin said all the previous strategies go out the door when it comes to the semi-state.
‘It’s helps a lot knowing we can beat all these guys without Curtis (Wetzel),’ said Martin, talking about Wetzel’s foot injury which kept him from running the regional. ‘It helps us to realize we could make it out of the top six teams there. The goal is to always get to state. I think winning this decisively here definitely gives them some motivation that we could make it next week.’
Corydon Central harrier Jake Pitts snagged the final advancing spot (top 10 individuals on non advancing teams) when he finished 23rd with a race time of 17:47. Teammate Dylan Bachman (18:03) placed 32nd.
Other male finishers were Lanesville’s Mark Sronce (42nd, 18:24) and David Blank (60th, 19:02) and South Central’s Dalton Terry (75th, 20:08).
With the boys running first, that meant the course conditions would be a little worse for the girls’ race. North Harrison’s Ashton Bosler quickly got out in front with Floyd Central’s Lydia Kotowski running in second with Jasper’s Hannah Welsh and Tara Cassidy in the next two spots. Bosler slowly pulled away as Kotowski continued to stay ahead of the Jasper runners.
The North Harrison junior went on to win with a time of 19:24, a second faster than her sectional finish. Kotowski was second in 19:40 with Welsh third (19:55) and Cassidy fourth (19:57). Floyd Central’s Madison Barney rounded out the top five in a time of 20:26.
‘I knew I had to get out quick, plus with the conditions you really needed to, I think,’ Bosler said. ‘You can pick which way you go if you’re in the lead … It’s much, much, much colder to me and really slick. It just wasn’t the washed out spots that were kind of bad; the majority of the course was pretty slick.’
Bosler said getting up front early at the Brown County semi-state will be more important than the sectional and regional.
‘Obviously, there’s greater competition at semi-state so I have to make sure I get out again,’ she said. ‘I have to stay with the pack. I can’t get too far back because then my head plays mind games with me that I’m already out of the race, so I just have to stay in it.’
Kotowski didn’t have the problems with her hip and vocal cords that she did in last Tuesday’s sectional run. The Floyd Central runner said that made for her better performance.
‘I did a ton of my breathing exercises, and I have so much Icy Hot on right now,’ she said. ‘Given what I’ve been doing all week, I’ve run all of seven miles since sectional trying to heal up to run, so I’m pleased. I’m happy but not satisfied. You always want to do better.’
Floyd Central coach Carl Hook said Saturday’s semi-state will be for positions with the Lady Highlander runners working for certain race positions to secure one of the six state-final spots.
‘Up there, we race for spots,’ Hook said. ‘We will pick out positions on our kids. You’re supposed to be in 10th, and you’re supposed to be in 20th. You’ve just got to hit those spots. You really can’t focus on teams too well because you’ve got so many. That’s a big, fast race, and time doesn’t matter anyway.
Crawford County’s Yasmine Yennes finished 31st in the race but, with the new qualifying rules, that was good enough to get the Wolfpack junior into her first semi-state run.
‘I had people tell me that maybe I got out, but I was really nervous because I knew I was on the border line of making it or not so I was happy with it,’ Yennes said. ‘I was honestly leaning more that I didn’t make it. I was kind of surprised and excited to get it.’
Other top runners for the third-place North Harrison team were Karin Blos (17th, 21:17), Shelby Lindsey (20th, 21:22), Hayley Elliot (32nd, 21:47), Stevi Burns (38th, 22:05), Lexi Terrell (60th, 23:22) and Natalie Hollensead (80th, 25:24).
Corydon Central’s Brianna Norris finished 49th with a time of 22:49. Finishing behind her in 50th was South Central’s Sandra Wagner (22:50). Lanesville’s Bailey Kaake (23:02) was 54th. Kaake’s teammate Katherine Winstead was 68th, running in 24:03.
Additional runners were Corydon Central’s Melissa Mayfield (71st, 24:09) and Kelcie Byrd (79th, 25:09).
The Brown County Semi-state will take place Saturday at 10:30 a.m. The top 10 individuals from non-advancing teams and the first six qualifying teams from each semi-state advance to the state finals.
Girls team scores (top 5 to semi-state) ‘ 1. Floyd Central 35, 2. Jasper 51, 3. North Harrison 101, 4. Northeast Dubois 116, 5. Forest Park 133, 6. New Albany 142, 7. Perry Central 166, 8. Southridge 184, 9. Jeffersonville 266, 10. Providence 275.
Girls individual results ‘ 1. Ashton Bosler (NH) 19:24, 2. Lydia Kotowski (FC) 19:40, 3. Hannah Welsh (Jasp) 19:55, 4. Tara Cassidy (Jasp) 19:57, 5. Madison Barney (FC) 20:26, 6. Kassidy Manning (FC) 20:27, 7. Aubrey Main (SR) 20:34, 8. Latesha Merkel (NED) 20:35, 9. Rose Kaforski (NA) 20:38, 10. Morgan Paul (FC) 20:39, 11. Julian Theis (PC) 20:44, 12. Gabby Rodriguez (FC) 20:46, 13. Noelle Weyer (Jasp) 20:54, 14. Amy Truesch (FP) 21:10, 15. Rachel Welsh (Jasp) 21:12.
Qualifying individual girls on non-qualifying teams ‘ 7. Aubrey Main (SR), 9. Rose Raforski (NA), 11. Julien Theis (PC), 18. Megan Thomas (PC), 24. Hailey Carman (TC), 24. Casai Lamb (SR), 28. Jalynn Pruitt 21:42, 29. Temple Ricke (NA), 31. Yasmine Yennes (CC), 33. Lauren Meyer (SR).
Boys team scores (top 5 to semi-state) ‘ 1. North Harrison 76, 2. Tell City 99, 3. Floyd Central 104, 4. Jasper 133, 5. Borden 135, 6. Perry Central 150, 7. Providence 159, 8. Northeast Dubois 162, 9. Forest Park 179, 10. Crawford County 195.
Boys individual results ‘ 1. Julien Magallanes (Bor) 16:26, 2. Daniel Fleace (NH) 16:38, 3. Aaron Pierrard (PC) 16:44, 4. Michael White (NH) 16:55, 5. Alex Heitz (FC) 17:01, 6. Bryce Lain (PC) 17:08, 7. Trey Dooley (FP) 17:13, 8. Cody Carton (CC) 17:16, 9. Luke Kerstiens (NED) 17:20, 10. Cale Killian (Jasp) 17:21, 11. David Betz (Prov) 17:21, 12. Cameron Sherry (TC) 17:22, 13. Lincoln Ottersbach (Prov) 17:27, 14. Cody Flamion (FP) 17:31, 15. Kyle Knies (Jasp) 17:32.
Qualifying individual boys on non-qualifying teams ‘ 3. Aaron Pierrard (PC), 6. Bryce Lain ({PC), 7. Trey Dooley (FP), 8. Cody Carlton (CC), 9. Luke Kersteins (NED), 11. David Betz (Prov), 13. Lincoln Ottersbach (Prov), 14. Cody Flamion (FP), 22. Tim Baumgart (NA), 23. Jake Pitts (Cor).