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Platteville runners shine in swamp-like conditions
Pla boys cc
(from left) Cal Udelhofen, Quinn Wright and Sam Kronick race together during Saturday's muddy Dick McKichan Platteville Invitational at UW–Platteville's Veteran's Memorial Park.

PLATTEVILLE — It was the muddiest, wettest Platteville Cross Country Invitational that Hillmen head coach Rob Serres can remember in his 37 seasons coaching at PHS.

The Platteville girls ran to a third-place finish out of 13 teams in the large school division. The Platteville boys finished ninth in the boys varsity large school division as sprinkles began to fall.

Steady rain fell throughout the girls JV race, then the skies opened and the ran began to fall in buckets during the boys JV race, which was cancelled after the first mile due to lightning in the area.

“The UW–Platteville maintenance staff did an outstanding job at getting the course as ready as they could, but the mud and standing water simply made the meet fun and super memorable for the kids,” said Serres.

Senior Brittani Meis continued her amazing final season for the Hillmen, finishing third out of 160 runners in the girls’ varsity race with a new team course record time of 19:41.4.

“Brittani, once again, had a great race Saturday, just truly great racing,” said Serres. “She set a new course record for Platteville High School and it was muddy. Times should have been slow, but several of our girls just ran your hearts out, led by Brittani.”

Junior Harmony Bell (21:25.6) and senior Alexis Thompson (21:25.6) both earned ribbons for finishing 26th and 27th respectively (16th and 17th in the large schools division).

Sophomore Abigail Goomey (22:25.0) finished 57th and classmate Kasey Hammill (22:47.4) placed 73rd to round out the Platteville girls scoring lineup.

Freshman Paige Kerkenbusch (23:34.5) came in 95th and sophomore Leah Hammill (23:55.0) finished 99th.  

Platteville (120) finished third behind McFarland (67) and Mount Horeb (96).

“ We are getting better each week,” said Serres of his girls’ team. “If we can all hit a great race on the same day, we have a legitimate shot at being one of the great teams. We just need to focus on what is possible.” 

The Platteville boys scored 215 points to place ninth out of 13 teams in the boys’ varsity large schools division.

Sauk Prairie (65) won the boys’ large schools title, while New Glarus/Monticello (103) finished second.

Junior John Wells led the young Hillmen boys with a 17th-place finish at 17:42.4.

Senior Sam Kronick (60th place) was Platteville’s second runner at 18:36, followed by freshman Quinn Wright (61st, 18:38.5), senior Cal Udelhofen (63rd, 18:39.3), freshman Casen Udelhofen (88th, 19:12.9), junior Caleb Wright (89th, 19:12.9) and freshman Erik Grabandt (91st, 19:16.8).

“We were the best we have been all season,” added Serres. “We had one in the 17s, three in the 18s and one in the low 19s. We need to continue to close that number five gap. The guys ran tough, and we will need to be a bit tougher come conference time. We need to keep that in mind as we prepare over the next couple of weeks.”

The Platteville JV girls, led by freshman Alli Bird (9th overall, 23:42) won the girls JV team title. 

Platteville will travel to the Albany Invitational on Saturday before hosting the Southwest Wisconsin Conference meet on Thursday, Oct. 17.

52nd Annual Dick McKichan Platteville Cross Country Invitational
(from Saturday, Oct. 5 @ UW–Platteville)
(Girls, 5,000 meters)
Top individuals (overall): 1.Kayci Martensen (Southwestern/Cuba City/Benton) 18:28.1, 2.Samantha Herrling (Wisc. Heights/Barneveld) 19:05.4, 3.Brittani Meis (Platteville) 19:41.4, 4.Bridee Burks (Lancaster) 19;44.9, 5.Madelynn McIntrye (Brodhead/Juda) 19:45.8. 
Large schools team scores: 1.McFarland 67, 2.Mount Horeb 96, 3.Platteville 120, 4.Union Grove 151, 5.Madison Edgewood 159, 6.Prairie du Chien 163, 7.Evansville 183, 8.Wisconsin Heights/Barneveld 213, 9.Sauk Prairie 215, 10.New Glarus/Monticello 236, 11.Brodhead/Juda 251, 12.Monroe 262, 13.River Valley 269.
Platteville (120): 3.(2).Brittani Meis 19:41.4, 26.(16).Harmony Bell 21:25.6, 27.(17).Alexis Thompson 21:25.6, 57.(38).Abigail Goomey 22:25.0, 73.(47).Kasey Hammill 22:47.40, 95.(60).Paige Kerkenbusch 23:34.5, 99.(63).Leah Hammill 23:55.0.
(Boys, 5,000 meters)
Top individuals (overall): 1.Christian Patzka (Wisc. Heights/Barneveld) 16:14.1, 2.Riley Siltman (Evansville) 16:52.6, 3.Hudson Haas (Sauk Prairie) 16:54.3, 4.Nick Connolly (Iowa–Grant) 16:57.8, 5.Kevin Hall (Union Grove) 17:06.7.
Large schools team scores: 1.Sauk Prairie 65, 2.New Glaurs/Monticello 103, 3.Monroe 107, 4.Union Grove 115, 5.Mount Horeb 119, 6.Evansville 169, 7.McFarland 182, 8.River Valley 214, 9.Platteville 215, 10.Wisconsin Heights/Barneveld 219, 11.Southwestern/Cuba City/Benton 247, 12.Brodhead/Juda 344, 13.Prairie du Chien 400.
Platteville (215): 17.(14).John Wells 17:42.4, 60.(45).Sam Kronick 18:36.3, 61.(46).Quinn Wright 18:38.5, 63.(48).Cal Udelhofen 18:39.3, 88.(62).Casen Udelhofen 19:12.9, 89.(63).Caleb Wright 19:12.9, 91.(64).Erik Grabandt 19:16.8.