For the first time in 12 years, the SME boys cross country team competed in state. Seven boys went to run at the Rim Rock course last Friday to compete, and the team finished fifth overall, just one point away from fourth.
The East team raced at Rim Rock for the second time this season. The course is known to be very difficult with steep hills. The weather during the race was not prime running conditions, it was in the forties and windy.
Despite the poor conditions, five of the of the east runners placed in the top 70. Among them was sophomore John Arnspiger who placed eighth overall, and is the second fastest sophomore in Kansas.
“[This season] I PR’d and broke the Shawnee Mission East 5k record,” said Arnspiger, “With a 16 minute, 15 second run at the Chile Pepper Cross Country Festival in Fayetteville, Arkansas.”
That was the only race all season that Arnspiger did not medal in despite his personal record.
The team worked hard all season, with hopes of making it to state.
“I loved running everyday with this group of dudes,” said Arnspiger. “We all had a lot of fun racing and torturing each other. They are all good guys and were serious at pushing each other for maximum success.”
This could be the only state competition for many of East’s runners. Junior Lance Meng enjoyed this season, and the experience of competing at state.
“It was my first state meet,” said Meng. “Going as a team made it even better. We are all proud of each other for finally making state as a team, and I personally met my goal which was to make it to state.”
Senior Theresa McAlister and junior Maddie Willson also competed in the state meet. Willson set a personal record and placed 22nd in the girls’ race.