SHERIDAN — Hundreds of the region’s top runners met in Sheridan Saturday for the Michelle Ludwig Invitational cross-country meet. Sheridan hosted more than 20 junior high and high school teams at the annual meet.
Sheridan’s day wasn’t just about hosting the meet, though, as Sheridan High School’s competitors battled to put their names toward the top of the leaderboards.
Brian Gonda was Sheridan’s top finisher, taking fourth in the boys varsity race with a time of 17 minutes, 7 seconds. Gonda’s time, along with top 30 finishes from David Standish (12th; 17:51) and Alex Garber (27th; 18:20) propelled the Broncs to 115 team points and a second-place finish.
Jackson won the meet with 52 points, and Billings Senior High School was a point behind SHS with 116. Worland’s Porter Harman won the boys varsity race with a time of 16:46.00.
“They just go out a little too slowly and had to play catch up, and luckily we ended up in second place,” Sheridan head coach Art Baures said of the boys race. “We need to get back to what made us so successful in the first two weeks, and that was lining up toe-to-toe with the best teams and slugging it out with them.”
Tongue River’s Cooper Vollmer finished 39th at the meet with a time of 18:44.89, while fellow Eagle Jett Walker took 85th out of 133 varsity runners with a time of 20:31.30.
In the girls race, Baures noted that the Lady Broncs are still trying to figure out which group of girls will make up the team’s top-seven by the end of the season.
Sheridan finished fourth with 110 points, 13 behind third-place Jackson Hole. Billings Senior won with 35 points, and Cody took second with 83 points. Rawlins’ Sydney Thorvaldson won the girls varsity race in 17:54.43.
McKinley Christopherson took 17th as Sheridan’s top girl with a time of 21:26.79. Sylvia Brown was 20th in 21:39.60, and Trinity Preston was 23rd with a 21:43.33 race.
“We have a great competition within our team for the varsity spots, but we are also trying to beat the teams we need to beat in our competitions,” Baures said. “We will solve this issue in the next two weeks so that we can progress in the races.”
Tongue River’s Macey MacArthur finished 80th Saturday with a time of 25:07.37 against some much larger schools, and teammate Kalie Bocek’s time of 25:55.66 was good for 93rd.
Normative Services Inc.’s Tae’sha Red Hat finished 62nd with a time of 24:10.63.
Big Horn High School placed its young runners in the junior varsity competition against some similar competition, with mixed results.
Billy Watson won the JV boys race in 19:14.07, and Bridger Michaud (21:06.80) and Nathaniel Lydic (21:200.52) took 17th and 21st, respectively. Elizabeth Foley led the Lady Rams with a 49th-place finish in the girls JV race with a time of 27:47.49. Mollie Watson finished 72nd.