A pair of top-ten finishers paced the Warsaw cross country teams on what was yet another successful day on the course Saturday at the New Haven Regional. Both boys and girls teams earned the top five finishes necessary to qualify for the state meet this weekend in Terre Haute.
Along with the Warsaw teams, a fair share of local individuals will join the Tigers at state after qualifying on their own.
Starting with the Warsaw boys team, which advanced with a second place finish, 16 points behind Concordia Lutheran. It was another great race for sophomore Jackson Gackenheimer, who continued his incredibly strong campaign with a fifth place finish and a time of 15:56.9. Tyler Mimnaugh finished in the top 15 in twelfth place with a time of 16:11.6. Tyler Swartz also finished in the top 15, finishing a few spots behind Mimnaugh at 16:14.6. Andrew Potter rounded out the Warsaw top four with a 16:48.1 time.
Another local team in attendance after a fine showing at sectionals were the Manchester Squires, who sent both boys and girls teams to New Haven for the regional. The boys finished in 21st place, led by Kyler Dale and his 16:55.9 time. Clark Showalter and Oliver Fitzpatrick rounded out the Squire top three.
Tippecanoe Valley’s Christopher Marquez was at New Haven as an individual after a great showing at sectionals. The sophomore ended his season with a time of 18:46.7.
The Warsaw girls cross country team holds up its ribbons earned for a top-five finish at Saturday’s regional. The Lady Tigers will also represent Warsaw at the state meet.
Moving over to the girls side, the Warsaw girls team was just barely able to qualify for state, finishing in fifth place, seven points ahead of Huntington North. Joey Rastrelli led all Lady Tigers with a sixth place finish and a time of 18:31.3. Joey’s younger sister Sammi finished second for Warsaw, taking 28th place overall. Eden Metz was the third highest finisher for Warsaw.
“We had some early setbacks in the race today, but the girls really pulled out the stops to claw their way back into the mix,” assistant coach Nate Howett said. “I am so proud of how they all pushed through and grabbed every spot they could to make sure today was not their last race.”
The Manchester girls team earned a top-ten finish on Saturday, but failed to qualify for state by finishing ninth. There was a silver lining for the Lady Squires though, as juniors Ayla Cashdollar and Kadence Fox both finished in the top 20 and will advance to the state championship as individuals.
Joining Cashdollar and Fox as individual qualifiers for state was Tippecanoe Valley’s Chesnee Miller, who finished in the top 30 with a time of 19:20.5, just making the cut. Another local individual who will be making a trip to Terre Haute is Wawasee’s Mia Hodgson, who finished as a top individual at the New Prairie Regional.
The state finals will be held Saturday at the Lavern Gibson Course in Terre Haute. The boys race will begin at noon and the girls race will start at 2:30. Award ceremonies will immediately follow each race.