Photo provided by the Cross Country Team
Last Saturday the varsity cross country team made their way down to Fayetteville, AR for their annual national Chile Pepper Invitational. The team drove four hours for a 16 minute race on Saturday morning.
The race consisted of over 100 teams from states all throughout the midwest, such as Texas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Iowa and Arkansas. There were over 750 runners for the boys’ and 630 for the girls’ varsity races. This meet is one of the most anticipated for the the Lancers every year, according to junior Sam McKnight
The runners arrived in Fayetteville, just outside of the University of Arkansas, on Friday, Sept. 30. After arriving at their hotel, the team had the entire night to relax and prepare for the 5k the next morning.
“The hotel is the usually the best part of our trips,” McKnight said. “We just get to hang out and not have to worry about running for once.”
Saturday morning the team woke up, ate a quick breakfast and headed to the University of Arkansas cross country course. The run consisted of a two laps around open fields. The runners consider the course the “PR course” or personal record course due to it’s easy and flat terrain.
“Nothing is as fun as getting your PR,” senior John Arnspiger said. “It’s awesome to find out you ran faster than you ever have.”
The top three finishers for the Lancer boys were senior John Arnspiger with time of 16.07.53, sophomore Griffin Keeter with a 16.08.00 and senior Jack Young with a 16.08.31. The finished with junior Ingrid Worth coming in at 16.08.62, senior Devon Dietrich with a 19.58.58 and freshman Eleanor Hlobik with a 20.52.81. The boys team placed 12 overall out of 121 teams and the girls placed 29 out of 101 teams.
The team hopes to take these times with them to regionals, and then to the state run at Rim Rock Farm in Lawrence, KS.
“Last year we placed in the top three at state for the first time 48 years,” McKnight said. “So this year we are really hoping we can win it.