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Trojan runners are improving
Trojan CC at Westby Invitational
THE NORTH CRAWFORD Boys Cross Country Team ran a strong race at the Westby Invitational.

NORTH CRAWFORD - On Tuesday, Sept. 24, Trojan runners competed at Westby’s Invitational Meet where they faced 17 schools from western Wisconsin, including Division 1 and 2 schools. It was a pleasant sunny evening for a cross country race.

The girls team finished 13th behind LaCrosse Logan and Fennimore High Schools. 

Junior Helen Carstens ran strong for the Trojans. Carstens finished in second place at 20:30, seven seconds behind Durand freshman Kendall Hagness. For the first two miles of the race, Carstens ran in third place behind Anelise Egge from Kickapoo-LaFarge. After the two-mile mark, Carstens pulled ahead of Egge for a great finish 21 seconds ahead of her toughest local competiton.

Freshman Emily Schmidt also finishing strong for the Trojans. Schmidt, who has averaged  around 27 minutes, finished with a personal best of 25:40. 

Rookie sophomore Danielle Tyler finished third for the team logging her first 5K time with a 30:20. Also scoring varsity points for the Trojans was senior Katie Schellhorn (32:58), and freshman Annie O’Brien (33:17). Sonja Bangert rounded out the Trojan team with a finish time of 34:06.

The boys team finished 15th, behind Prairie du Chien and Melrose-Mindoro. Leading the boys was junior Liam O’Brien, who dropped his best time by a minute. O’Brien’s 21:31 placed him ahead of Kickapoo rival Keegan Funk. Other Trojan varsity finishers were Carlos Lopez (23:51), Sven Vale (24:16), Cordel Tyler (24:23) and Dylan Heisz (27:45). Non-scoring Trojans were Viktor Sapunov (30:22) and Marco Esparza (30:52). 

On Saturday, Sept. 28, the Trojan cross country team traveled to Reedsburg, where they ran at the Hartje Outdoor Learning Center. The day was cool and sunny, ideal for distance runners. The competition was fierce, with over 350 runners from six Division 1 schools, four Division 2 schools and six Division 3 schools.  

Despite the lofty field of runners, Trojan Helen Carstens handily won the girls race in a 2019 best time of 20:04, 29 seconds ahead of second place runner Madison Krey from River Valley (Spring Green). 

“Helen ran a great time with no close competition” noted Coach Liz Bransky, “...we are excited to see what Castens can do on a flat course with some tough competition.” 

Finishing second for the Trojans with a new personal record (PR) was junior Kloee Chamberlain with a time of 25:04. Also scoring for the Trojans wer Annie O’Brien (30:58). Sonja Bangert (31:14.0) and Katie Schellhorn (31:14.2). 

Finishing first for the boys team was Liam O’Brien with a time of 20:54, a new personal record for him.

“This is very exciting,” Bransky commented. “We have yet to see what Liam can do. With more mileage over the next few weeks, I expect his time to continue to drop.” 

Second on the team was Carlos Lopez who finished with a PR of 22:19. Sophomore Wyatt Sanders joined the team late in the season and finished his first race third on the team with a time of 24:18. Also scoring points for the Trojans was Sven Vale (24:46), Dylan Heisz (27:37) and Viktor Sapunov (29:55).

Trojan Cross Country will compete at Kickapoo on Thursday, Oct. 3 and in Platteville at UW Platteville Veterans Park on Saturday, Oct. 5.