Eudora girls third at league, ready for regional
The Eudora girls cross country team got third at the Frontier League meet.
The girls wanted second and they dreamed of first.
They got third.
But, that's not all bad, coach Paul Boone said after looking over the results from Thursday's race at Rim Rock Farm.
While the girls were disappointed in their team performance, a number of Cardinals had their best races of the season.
Brittney Graff won, again. Graff, who finished in a personal best time of 11 minutes, 45 seconds, hasn't lost a race in more than a month. She has won five straight, last finishing second on Sept. 10 at Wamego.
"It's rare to win a cross country race," Boone said. "You put five or six of those together, that's very usual. I don't think people realize how tough that is."
The lower portions of the girls' varsity roster also came through big. Freshman Elizabeth Hoese knocked 32 seconds off of her previous personal best, a time record just a week prior at Eudora.
Emily Ballock finished 18th with a time of 13:27, Hoese was 22nd in 13:48 and Cara Seats was 24th in 13:50.
"I was ecstatic about Liz's race," Boone said. "She finally broke out of that same pace she's been working with and then at Rim Rock, at the toughest course she's run all year, she had just an enormous breakthrough. She's got a little more bounce in her step. She's building that confidence up."
The guys didn't excel as a team either, finishing sixth with 173 points, but again, individuals stood out.
Cody Burns was at the top of the heap.
Burns finished ninth with a time of 17:39. It was his third dip below the 18-minute mark and represents the amount of work the junior has put in this fall, Boone said.
Burns started out slower, staying near the middle of the pack, but he kicked it on hard over the last mile and finished strong.
"Cody ran really smart," Boone said. "He's become a student of running. He reads a lot. He thinks a lot about what we're trying to do. He's out there every day and he goes 100 percent. He's really taken ownership in his races."
Now Boone is looking for Burns and the boys team to turn some heads at Saturday's regional championship.
The boys weren't close to the top teams at league, finishing 61 points behind third-place De Soto, but the team has improved significantly.
Tim DeArmond was 18th at league with a time of 18:09. Coupled with Burns, the pair represents the team's most consistent placers.
Joey Chino and Soeren Quittkat finished 35th and 59th and Sean Wiard was 75th. That's were improvement has to come.
"We've got a good chance as a team," Boone said. "Joey and Soeren still have their best races in them. Sean is, I just really see a breakthrough race from him."
"We can compete with them. It's got to be a man-on-man race. Every single person will be important."