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Cross country Cats finish sixth at Trott Invitational
Freshmen Haas, Hora lead Cats
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WESTBY — The Hillsboro cross country teams opened the season last Tuesday at the Ken Trott Invitational in Westby.
Both teams finished sixth at the eight-team event.

The Hillsboro were led by freshmen newcomers Annie Haas and Sam Hora.

Haas finished ninth overall with a time of 18:14 on the 4,000 meter course. Girls will run 5,000 meters (3.1 miles) this year, but Westby's course had to be cut short for this race due to ground bees covering a portion of the course.

Senior Adriana Reese finished 27th at 20:26, followed by Hora (35th, 21:21), senior Shauna Parish (37th, 21:25) and Destiny Shore (42nd, 21:37). Junior Breanna Beaver, a state qualifier a year ago, place 49th at 22:08.

Westby edge La Crosse Aquinas 37–43 to win the girls’ team title. Hillsboro scored 135 points, 15 behind fifth-place Cochrane–Fountain City.

The Hillsboro boys scored 161 points. Aquinas captured the boys’ title with 48 points ahead of runner-up Marshall (62) and Onalaska Luther (76).

Sophomore Zach O’Hair placed 15th to lead the Tigers with a time of 15:58.

Senior Avery Rueckheim was 31st (16:45), junior Skyler Fisher was 33rd (16:52), freshman Drew Bisarek was 53rd (18:10) and senior Mitch Beckwith was 66th (18:49) to round out Hillsboro’s scoring team.

“I really liked the effort on Tuesday,” said Hillsboro head coach Ben Leis. “We always train right through these first few meets, so we were on the track the night before running ladders. But overall I was pleased with what I saw.”

Wednesday night the Tigers returned to action at the 10-team Cashton Invitational.

Haas once again pace the Hillsboro girls with a 30th place finish in 23:36.

The Tigers scored 128 points and finished fifth as a team.

Westby had four of the top five finishers, including individual medalist Elena Schmitt (21:37) to win the girls’ title.

Viroqua outscored Westby 41–73 to win the boys’ title and prevent the sweep.

The Hillsboro boys scored 160 points and placed seventh.

O’Hair placed 21st at 20:34, and Rueckheim was 23rd at 20:38 to lead the Tigers.

“I was very pleased with both teams on Friday,” said Leis. “Both team improved from our first race last Tuesday at Westby. We still have a lot of work to do but were moving in the right direction.”

Hillsboro will take part in the Viroqua Invitational on Thursday before returning to Westby Tuesday for the Snowflake Invitational.