Sat, Dec. 14

CROSS COUNTRY - Marauders make strides at Four Corners Invitational
Cutbirth finishes 2nd overall

The Marauders got a run through of the regional course on Saturday at the Four Corners Invitational Cross Country meet at Buffalo Park in Flagstaff.

"We were hoping for a positive experience that might carry over to the Region meet next month," said coach Jim Bostwick. "I think without a doubt the kids were very proud of their effort both as a team and as individuals."

The Mingus girls went into race knowing that if they could keep their gap from our first to 5th scoring runner under a minute, they could run with the top teams in the state.

Well it was 1:15, not perfect but good enough to finish in 5th place in the 19-team field, Mingus' best finish at this meet since Jim Bostwick has been coaching.

"We got beat by some pretty good teams," said coach Bostwick.

1. Chinle 3A (Defending state champs)

2. Flagstaff (Defending 4A state champs)

3. Tuba City 3A (Runners-up last year)

4. Sedona Red Rock

The girls were led by sophomore Emma Schraner in 21:04 over the 2.97 mile course, which was good for 23th place in 139-runner field. Freshman Kyler Storie was a couple steps behind in 25th place in 21:08. Sophomore Alex Henley was 50th place in 22:10 (a 5:05 improvement over her freshman time here last year, earning her most improved lady Marauder for day). Next was senior Staci Hewitson in 22:17 in 51st place (this race has been a story of Staci's career - she came out sophomore year, ran 24:57, last year 23:06 and is always improving). Junior Erin Freriks rounded out Mingus scoring with 52nd place finish in 22:19.

Although she didn't score, senior Chelsea Ishimoto finished in 62nd place in 22:44, which was the reason why Mingus got 5th place as they were tied with last years state runners-up in 1A, Northland Prep after 5-man scoring and Mingus won on the 6th runner tiebreaker.

The boys' 3-year winning streak at Four Corners ended but they certainly put up a fight in losing to Flagstaff 71 to 88. Third place went to Chinle with 89 points in the 29-team field.

Senior Wilson Cutbirth ended his career on a high note at Four Corners, finishing runner-up in the 187-runner field in 16:09.

"His times on this course over the last four years, much like Staci have also shown how he has matured in sport," said coach Bostwick.

Cutbirth's times: Freshman 17:36, sophomore 16:40 and junior 16:20.

Sophomore Juan Well was 10th in 16:44, junior Hunter Rauch was 14th in 16:53, sophomore Colin Garttmeier was 29th in 17:19 (most improved Marauder boy on day with an improvement of 1:55 over his frosh time). Junior Austin Covey was 35th in 17:33 and sophomore Chris Ortiz was 46th in 18:01.

Tanner Johnson was the leading JV runner, running 19:17, finishing 24th in 159-runner field.

The Marauder cross country team is taking next week off to prepare for the Mingus Invitational, which is on Oct. 3 at Clarkdale Elementary.

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