BOSCOBEL - The Boscobel Bulldogs will be sending senior boys’ cross country runner Jordan Molzof to state competition in Wisconsin Rapids on Saturday. Molzof finished in ninth place in a race loaded with talent, earning his third trip to the WIAA state championships for cross country.
“Our corner of the state continually hosts the deepest and toughest Division 3 sectional in the state,” said Coach Skyler Reynolds. “There is a lot of talent and tradition in southwest Wisconsin. Fennimore put on a great sectional Saturday, with streaming footage of the mile and two mile marks and they did a lot of extras that made it special. With the #1, 6, 7, 15th ranked boys teamsm, and the #2, 3, 6, 8, and 14th ranked girls teams, and only two teams qualify, everyone knew some good teams were going to be left home.”
The boys team placed 4th and were right in the mix through two miles.
Jordan Molzof was quick to get out with the lead pack and ran a nice race to qualify as an individual with a time of 17:49.7. The rest of the boys stayed together, working as a group.
“I loved the way our pack was moving together throughout the race,” said the coach. “Unfortunately, Wisconsin Heights made a big push in the last mile and got away from us.”
Noah Toye came in 23rd with a time of 18:48.6. He was followed by Jack Latham in 27th with 19:02.1; Dallas Marks, 30th, in 19:07.4, and David Martinez, 43rd, in 19:37.3.
On the girls’ side, Mackenzie Kauffman and Grace Glasbrenner got out in a great spot in the top 10. The rest of the Bulldog pack got out a little slow, but made a nice move just past a mile before the first hill.
“We moved by a couple teams, but Darlington and Albany were out of reach,” said Coach Reynolds. “Grace made an awesome late push, and missed qualifying for state by one place (four seconds). She gave a great effort.
“Mackenzie wasn’t feel 100% from illness and it got the best of her midway through the race. It was an unfortunate day for it to happen, but she did her best to stay strong, and battled hard to finish the race.
“There is no doubt that the kids left it on the course. The juniors and seniors did so much for everyone on the team to prepare for the race.”
The girls’ team finished in fifth place. Glasbrenner, a freshman runner, placed 12th individually with a time of 21:43.3 She was followed by Sydney Haines in 19th with 22:04.6; Mackenzie Kauffman, 29th, in 22:53.3; Abbey Manning, 31st, in 22:58.4; and Leah Wacker, 36th, in 22:24.3.
“I was proud of the way our kids handled themselves and represented Boscobel,” said the coach. “This is truly one of the best seasons that I have had as a coach, and the outcome of sectionals on Saturday certainly does not define the success on the season. This is a phenomenal bunch of kids that has not only worked extremely hard, but was a joy to be around every day. The amount of improvement from day one until now is incredible.
“The team is excited to have Jordan representing us on Saturday, and another week of hard work preparing for the state meet.
“Thank you to all of the parents and fans for supporting the team, and we hope to see a nice group on Saturday.”
The WIAA State Cross Country meet will be held at Ridges Golf Course in Wisconsin Rapids. The boys’ Division 3 race will be held at 12-noon. Shuttle/race information can be found at wiaawi.org.
A 30-minute highlight show of both the State Boys and Girls Cross Country Meets will be aired on the Time Warner Cable Sports Channel on Wednesday, Nov. 16 at 7 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
There are 16 teams competing for the Divisions 2 and 3 team titles. Five-time defending boys’ Division 3 champion Darlington will attempt to make it six titles in a row in Division 3. The Redbirds return four runners that ran at State a year ago. There are five other teams finishing in the top 10 in 2015 returning with hopes of contending for the crown. They are Chequamegon, who returns five runners after finishing third last season; Aquinas, with five runners returning for a team that placed fourth; and Rosholt, which placed fifth a year ago with five returning participants this year. Assumption finished sixth last season and has five returnees to the meet, and Sheboygan Lutheran was 10th last year.
In Division 3, senior Jacob Wahlers of Algoma is the highest finisher from last year’s race returning this season. He placed sixth. Junior Dan Lau of Eau Claire Immanuel Lutheran is back after placing seventh last season. Two other qualifiers that placed in the top 10 last year are senior Brian Matthews of Riverdale, who was ninth, and junior Wesley Schiek of Valley Christian, who was 10th. Other possible challengers for the individual crown possessing State experience or racing to sectional titles are senior Andrew Ruiz of Webster; junior Michael Axtman of Living Word Lutheran; and sophomores David Vannucchi of Luther, Adam Rzentkowski of Rosholt and Payton Heinberg of Darlington.
Molzof finished ninth in the sectional one year ago and went on to place 12th at state. He is the number six returning runner in the state from last year.