Girls shine for Aspen, Basalt at regional cross country meet in Delta | AspenTimes.com

Girls shine for Aspen, Basalt at regional cross country meet in Delta

Basalt's Sierra Bower, Carly Robinson and Lily Gillis take off from the start of Friday's Class 3A cross country regional in Delta.

The Aspen High School girls cross country team is headed to the Class 3A state meet after a strong regional performance Friday in Delta.

"Awesome day," AHS coach Chris Keleher said. "The girls ran exceptionally well. Such a strong performance from all of them. I can't find the superlatives."

Aspen had three runners finish in the top 11 of the girls' race at Confluence Park, with the top 15 finishers advancing to state as individuals. More importantly, AHS finished fourth as a team with 92 points, the cutoff for team qualification, allowing them to send a full team of seven runners to next Saturday's meet in Colorado Springs.

Aspen freshman Kylie Kenny led the Skiers by taking seventh with a time of 20 minutes, 10.9 seconds. Fellow freshmen Kendall Clark (20:33.60) and Edie Sherlock (20:33.61) finished 10th and 11th, respectively.

"Kendall didn't quite have the race she was hoping to, but she has been consistent all season long and just did a great job," Keleher said. "And Edie ran an incredible race. Edie and Jane both ran great races. Macy picked it up right at the very end and passed a bunch of girls."

Senior Jane Marolt (26th, 21:28.2), freshman Macy Hopkinson (43rd, 22:38.2), senior Chelsea Moore (51st, 23:04.3) and freshman Maggie Woodrow (65th, 24:32.3) all are qualified to compete at state for Aspen after the team's fourth-place finish.

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"They were hungry," Keleher said. "They wanted it. It was really fun to be a part of."

Steamboat Springs went 1-2-3 in the girls' race, led by Maggi Condon's winning time of 18:38.4. The Sailors cruised to the team title with 44 points, followed by Moffat County (74 points) and Gunnison (87 points).

Aspen will not have any boys at the state meet, although junior Everett Olson gave it a good run, finishing 21st overall in 18:13.14 to lead the Skiers. Gunnison's Colton Stice won the boys' regional race in 16:46.53, while Gunnison also took the team title over Moffat County, Pagosa Springs and Olathe. Aspen was ninth.

"He ran a personal best, just didn't quite have the firepower when he needed it," Keleher said of Olson. "But no shame at all. He ran a great race. He competed super well."

Basalt sending two girls to state meet

The Basalt High School girls cross country team finished fifth, falling an agonizing two points short of Aspen in an attempt to qualify as a group. Still, the Longhorns had two runners qualify as individuals for next week's meet.

Freshman Sierra Bower led that charge, finishing fifth in 19:57.7. Rifle's Sarah Wagler was fourth in 19:20.8, right behind the Steamboat trio.

BHS senior Carly Robinson is the other individual qualifier for the Longhorns. She finished ninth in 20:32.9. Robinson also went to state as a sophomore.

"They ran really well today, especially the freshman that got fifth. That was a bit of a surprise," Basalt coach Ron Lund said. "They ran their hearts out. Three of my top five PR'd. Granted it's a PR course, but we were dealing with 25 mile-per-hour winds down there that I've never seen."

The Basalt boys finished 12th as a team, led by a 34th-place finish from Tucker Bruce (18:54.72.)

"It was kind of tough, but at least we are getting to go back to state and taking two girls to see what they can do," Lund said.

acolbert@aspentimes.com

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