WISCONSIN DELLS — The Hillsboro girls cross country team is starting to get healthy.
Friday night, the Tigers finished fourth out of 18 complete teams in Division 3 at the Princeton–Green Lake Nightfall Classic at Spring Brook Golf Course in Wisconsin Dells.
The Hillsboro girls (145) finished just 12 points behind third-place Oshkosh Lourdes (133) and 26 points behind D3 girls’ champion Boscobel (119).
The Hillsboro boys also turned in a number of personal-best times on the relatively flat course at Spring Book and placed eighth out of 23 teams in the boys’ D3 race with 219 points. Sheboygan Luthern won the D3 boys’ title with 75 points. Scenic Bluffs Conference rival Brookwood (212) finished just seven points ahead of the Tigers, the closest margin between the two teams this year.
“It was just an unbelievable atmosphere,” said Hillsboro head coach Ben Leis. “They expanded the event from 25 to 50 teams this year, but kept the races roughly the same size by splitting them into a Division 1/2 and Divison 3 races for both boys and girls. But just the atmosphere of have 50 teams at a meet is something special. It brings the best out of your kids, that’s for sure.
Leis also noted that nearly everyone on both Hillsboro teams set personal bests on Friday night.
“It was a flat course so that helped, but this has been a very hot year and running at night allowed the temps to come down,” said Leis. “That was definitely beneficial for us.”
Senior Annie Haas again led the way for the Hillsboro girls, finishing sixth out of 167 runners in Division 3 with a time of 19:58.53, but a number of Tigers turned in great performances to aid the fourth-place team finish.
Sophomore Hannah Munson placed 16th with a time of 21:01.63 and junior Paige Stull turned in her best time of the season to finish 37th at 22:1.08.
Sophomore Mia Brown (22:33.62) and freshman Megan Salisbury (22:39.21) finished 46th and 49th to round to round out Hillsboro’s team score.
“Paige Stull had her best race since last season,” said Leis. “That’s a complete game-changer for us. Mia Brown and Megan Salisbury ran together and really helped each other. That was nice to see. We were only 26 points out of first-place and in a 25-team meet like this, that isn’t a whole lot.”
Leis said a few of his girls are only 90 percent, but as a whole the team is in much better shape than early in the seasno.
“We are getting pretty close to being all the way healthy,” said Leis. “We are getting in to shape as we come down the stretch.”
Senior Dakota Wells finished sixth out of 248 runners in the D3 boys’ race with a time of 17:07.39.
Senior Drew Bisarek finished 33rd at 18:00.09 and junior Dawson Cordner broke 19 minutes for the first time to place 50th at 18:23.59.
“That was huge for Dawson and the team,” said Bisarek. “And if Drew can keep cutting time and run in the 17s for us that is only going to make us stronger. We finished only seven points behind Brookwood. We have not beaten them all year, but hopefully we are starting to reel team back.”
Sophomore Brendan Griffin finished 63rd and freshman Billy Filler placed 74th to round out Hillsboro’s scoring team. Sophomore Dalton Kehoe turned in a PR to place 115th at 20:01.34 to earn a spot on Hillsboro’s seven-man varsity team.
“We are looking forward to running at Riverdale Friday, another flatter course, and taking that energy from last Friday night to a daylight course see how much we can improve.
Friday’s Riverdale Invitational will be the final regular season meet of the season. The Tigers will travel to Cashton next Thursday for the Scenic Bluffs Conference meet.
Princeton–Green Lake Nightfall Classic
(from Friday, Sept. 29 @ Spring Brook Golf Course, Wisconsin Dells)
(Girls, 5,000 meters)
Division 3 top 10 team scores: 1.Boscobel 119, 2.Home School Eagles 131, 3.Oshkosh Lourdes 133, 4.Hillsboro 145, 5.Marathon 148, 6.Sheboygan Lutheran 182, 7.Weyauwega–Fremont 191, 8.Living World Lutheran 193, 9.Fennimore 207, 10.Marshall 211.
D3 top finishers: 1.Marissa Ellenbecker (Edgar) 18:55.21, 2.Havilah Pfarr (Home School) 19:26.5, 3.Anna Buchberger (Maraton) 19:30.3, 4.Dianna Dugan (Marshall) 19:33.45, 5.Claire Huggett (Marshall) 19:49.8.
Hillsboro: 6.Annie Haas 19:58.83, 16.Hannah Munson 21:01.63, 37.Paige Stull 22:16.08, 46.Mia Brown 22:33.62, 49.Megan Salisbury 22:39.21, 83.Carly Krajco 24:19.01, 111.Payton Auel 25:17.44.
(Boys, 5,000 meters)
Division 3 top 10 team scores: 1.Sheboygan Lutheran 75, 2.Living World Lutheran 90, 3.Marathon 133, 4.Boscobel 165, 5.Oshkosh Lourdes 182, 6.Marshall 195, 7.Brookwood 212, 8.Hillsboro 219, 9.Princeton-Green Lake 224, 10.Fennimore 265.
Top finishers: 1.Jackson Moore (Lourdes) 16:26.0, 2.Michael Axtman (Living World Lutheran) 16:32.4, 3.Isaac Shannon (St. Marry’s Springs) 16:54.0, 4.Ian Barry (Fennimore) 16:55.5, 5.Jared Jurss (Sheboygan Lutheran) 17:01.90.
Hillsboro: 6.Dakota Wells 17:07.39, 33.Drew Bisarek 18:00.09, 50.Dawson Cordner 18:23.38, 63.Brenden Griffin 18:50.3, 74.Billy Filler 19:02.46, 85.Nick Kurtz 19:22.42, 115.Dalton Kehoe 20:01.34.