The Columbia Falls cross country teams had a busy week as they ran in Whitefish Tuesday before traveling to Missoula for the Mountain West Classic Saturday.
Both the boys and girls came away with second-place finishes in Whitefish, as Frenchtown came in first.
Lara Erickson ran an aggressive race, going out with the lead pack and was able to maintain contact. This strategy was good enough to earn her fifth place overall. Behind her, Genevieve Delorme, Raychel Hoerner, Kara Mohr, Rebekah Walker and Emma Upton packed up for much of the race. This put them in good overall scoring positions for their team.
“I was excited about their second place finish, and it was a nice shot in the arm for the girls’ team going into the latter part of the cross country season,” head coach Jim Peacock said. “ If we can run like this in future races, the girls will be competitive at the state level.”
Wildcat Joe Lamb was the overall winner in the boys’ race, while Seth Umbriaco was fifth and James Role was seventh.
Both teams again had strong showings Saturday as they took on the large field of competitors at the Mountain West Classic in Missoula, which included 2077 runners representing 74 schools.
Erickson was the top finisher for the Kats, coming in 97th, while Hoerner, Delorme, Mohr all finished in the top 200. The Kats took 32nd overall and seventh among Class A schools.
“They raced terrific and are continuing their upward trajectory toward the end of the season,” Peacock said. “It was a productive race and a fun day.”
The Cats finished 15th overall in their race and were the top Montana team smaller that Class AA.
Lamb was the top Columbia Falls runner with 59th place. Seth Umbriaco finished 87th. James Role was 110th, and Aiden Jarvis 128th. Senior Beau Umbriaco was 195th. Biff Bennett and Bailey Sjostrom finished side by side for 275th and 276th.
“The boys had a great showing at Mountain west. I was especially happy with the split between our first and fifth runner closing up a little,” Peacock said. “The boys aren’t running their best yet, but what they’re doing is pretty solid.”