EDITOR'S NOTE: The Swnews4u.com Athlete of the Week is a web-only feature that will publish each Thursday throughout the calendar year.
Niko Karavergos, Sr., Shullsburg boys cross country
VIOLA – Shullsburg Niko Karavergos got the 2020 season started off on the right foot by running away with the boys’ individual title at the Ridge and Valley/Six Rivers Conference Meet hosted by Kickapoo High School on Thursday, Sept. 3.
Karavergos, a WIAA Division 3 individual state qualifier a season ago, dominated the field in the season opener as he completed the boys’ 5,000-meter race in the winning time of 18:10.8, which was nearly a minute and 10 seconds ahead of River Ridge senior Brett Kerscher’s runner-up mark of 19:20.
“Winning a race has always been the goal for him. I am tremendously happy for Niko. He has put a lot of time and effort in during the off-season and I am glad it is beginning to pay off,” said Shullsburg head coach Zach Wedige.
After Tuesday’s conference race at River Ridge High School on Tuesday, Sept. 8, the Miners will return to Kickapoo High School for another conference meet on Tuesday, Sept. 15, starting at 4:30 p.m.
HONORABLE MENTION (in alphabetical order)
Lauryn Bunn, Sr., Fennimore girls cross country
Bunn, a 2018 WIAA Division 3 state qualifier, finished third out of 42 runners in the girls' race at Saturday's Iowa–Grant Invitational. Bunn's third-place finish helped the Golden Eagles (87) finished second behind Albany (46) and Brookwood (56).
Nick Connolly, Sr., Iowa–Grant boys cross country
Connolly won the season-opening Iowa–Grant Invitational Saturday on his home course with a winning-time of 17:48.6 to lead the Panthers to a second-place team-finish at the six-team race behind champion Brookwood, 35–56.
Ally Ihm, Jr., Cassville girls cross country
Ihm finished fourth out of 32 runners at last Thursday's Ridge and Valley/Six Rivers conference meet at Kickapoo with a time of 22:58.8.
Kayci Martensen, Jr., and Hanna Martensen, Fr., Southwestern/Cuba City/Benton girls cross country
The sister duo from Benton finished first and second at Saturday's six-team seaon-opening Iowa–Grant Invitational. Kayci, the reigning WIAA Division 2 individual state champion, won the girls' individual title Saturday with a time of 18:58.8, while the younger Hanna finished second in her high school debut with a time of 21:32.6.
Drew Robson, Sr., Southwestern/Cuba City/Benton boys cross country
Robson, a Cuba City senior, placed second at Saturday's Iowa–Grant Invitational with a time of 18:21 to help the Wildcats (69) finish third as a team behind Brookwood (35) and the host Iowa–Grant Panthers (56).