Thornapple Kellogg High School
Girls Varsity Cross Country
Game Summaries & Headlines.
- Game Date
- Sep 11, 2023
The Coach B Invitational is a special one because it gives a chance to salute Coach B, but not just because of all of her accolades, but because she is Coach B! Our girls love having her there and Coach B enjoys seeing them go to work and providing encouragement. Personally, I always want to win this race to add to the celebration of Coach B. We didn’t win our division today, but we had a really strong showing and the girls were runner’s up. The girls can definitely feel proud about how things unfolded.
When Coach Reynolds and I finished measuring and lining the course, we didn’t think much of the finish line being in a different spot from last year, because the start was a little further back, and we took a path we hadn’t been able to use in awhile. However, after the girls ran and I heard so many of them talking about having personal and season records I started to get nervous. I knew they ran strong and they ran well, but seeing all those PR’s; I was starting to wonder. This is what usually happens when a course is short. After looking at the results further and considering that this has really been our best racing weather day so far, I decided to accept that, no…the girls just ran that fast!
Ava Crews came into today with a plan of going for it from the jump…and she did. She led the race for a mile or so, and then was battling for the top spot the rest of the way. Ultimately Gianna Chaignot (19:08) of the Grand Rapids Track Club crossed the line first, with Emma DeVries (19:12), running for GR West Michigan Aviation finishing second (not in the same division), and then Ava came in a PR of 19:18 third, but second in our division.
I’ve been encouraging our girls to take risks and experiment with tactics, and I liked the way Ava went for it and took a risk today. It was tough for her, but it was also good for her to challenge herself in this way.
Freshman Ellie Harmon took a more gradual approach in working her way through the field, and yet again pounded out a great race and scored herself a PR in 20:24, and 5th overall in our division. Ellie ran a great race and is continuing to improve.
Freshman Meghan Skidmore continues to impress with her skills, and in this case over 3.1 miles of wet grass and mud. She finished 7th overall and third for TK in a PR of 20:50.
Next for TK was Sophomore Mady Kietzman, who is gaining confidence and running strong. She crossed the line in a PR of 21:23.
Freshman Peyton Hardy is as tough as they come and she showed this once again placing 11th overall and 5th for TK in a PR of 21:30.
Senior Holly Velting was next for TK, finishing in a respectable 22:34. She was 22nd overall and 6th for TK.
Carmen Reynolds and Alaina McCrumb are freshmen on the rise. They were on a mission today and it showed. They both ran PRs in 22:40 and 22:51 respectively. Sandwiched between these two was Kate Powers, and she brought the heat on an otherwise cool and drizzly day, smashing self-imposed barriers and crossing the line in a PR of 22:50…like a boss! Kate has wanted to go sub-23 for some time now, and to see the joy on her face after accomplishing this was priceless.
Sophomore Avery Hagemann didn’t have her best race of the season, but she is showing that she is also moving up. She crossed the line in 23:14 and was in the top 10 for TK. Right on Hagemann’s heels was fellow sophomore Megan Schuurmans who ran a season record of 23:21, showing she’s got more to give.
Freshman Hailey Lee had a rough go of things today, which included the need to clean up her scraped knee and some mud that the slick course provided, but she muscled through, crossing the line in 25:02.
Freshman Raylee Preston had some calf pain, but she didn’t let that stop her from earning a PR in 26:03.
Rounding out for the Trojans was senior Laine Hinton, who had a solid race, and a really strong finish, earning her a season record of 27:08.
A special shout out to senior, “Coach Mollie Moore”, and sophomores Lucy Tuenessen and Devon Barnhill for playing the support role today. Always helpful!
The girls did well once again. Watching them compete never gets old. They are experimenting with their capabilities, learning what they can do, and evolving as not just athletes, but cross country runners, and it’s exciting! Congratulations on yet another great day at the “office” ladies.