Weller leads Tonganoxie girl harriers to team title at home quadrangular
Christy Weller and her Tonganoxie cross country teammates made themselves comfortable at their new home Thursday.
Weller, a sophomore at THS, won the girls race in the four-team meet with a time of 13 minutes, 24 seconds at the Leavenworth County Fairgrounds. The Chieftains, as a team, won the quadrangular with 32 points, while Basehor-Linwood finished second with 46.
For the first time in several years, the Chieftains competed at the fairgrounds. In recent years, the team held its meets at the school district's 80 acres south of Washington Street. Now that a new middle school is being constructed on the property, the team has moved its meets to the fairgrounds.
Jennifer Wagner finished a close second to Weller with a 13:37 time, while Megan Holton (14:07) finished sixth and Kaitlynn Saathoff 13th (14:37). A pack of Chieftains formed at the finish line not long after Saathoff completed the race. Kezia Huseman, Kayla Leffert and Kelley Stauch finished 16th, 17th and 18th respectively. Huseman finished in 14:53, while Leffert was clocked at 15:02 and Stauch at 15:03 in a race that had 30 runners.
The Chieftains ran as coach Phil Williams expected in the quadrangular. This week, the team will compete in a substantially larger meet -- the Maur Hill Invitational on Thursday in Atchison. The Chieftains, Williams said, will run against about 17 or 18 schools at that meet.
"I think our girls will be really challenged up there," Williams said.
Boys cross country
Perennial power Kansas City Christian prevented the Tonganoxie boys from providing a clean Chieftain sweep of the quadrangular.
The Panthers barely beat out the Chieftains in the boys race. KC Christian scored 26 to Tonganoxie's 31. Lansing, which sent only half of its team to the Tonganoxie meet, finished third with 82. Basehor-Linwood finished fourth with 101.
Tonganoxie freshman Matt Brock led the Chieftains with a third-place finish. He had a time of 18:34. Teammate Justin Smith finished with the same time, but was listed as taking fourth place. Another freshman, David Powell, placed seventh with a 19:21 time. Powell finished first among four Chieftains -- Colt Coffin placed eighth (19:24), John Davis ninth (19:26) and Michael Shaw 10th (19:29). Colin Perkins also placed for the Chieftains, taking 18th out of 30 teams.
"They ran in a pack well and came on strong in the last mile," Williams said.
Tonganoxie next will compete at 4:30 p.m. Thursday at the Maur Hill Invitational in Atchison.
Junior varsity teams roll at home meet
The Tonganoxie boys and girls junior varsity teams won their respective races.
The Chieftain boys scored 18 for first place, while the Chieftain girls had 28 for first.
In the boys race, Patrick Holton finished first with a 19:48 time. Kelly Garrett was close behind in second with a 19:56 time. The Chieftains took five of the first six spots as Kazi Fukuyasu placed fourth (20:44), Tyson Letourneau fifth (20:55) and Tim Beeman sixth (20:57).
Other THS runners placing were: Chris Down in ninth (21:26), Chad Pierson in 10th (21:29), Kavet Letourneau in 12th (22:16) and Ryan Stockman in 19th (24:23) out of 30 runners.
Ashli Koch placed second for Tonganoxie with a 15:03 time in the girls race. Katie Chenoweth and Laurie Chenoweth finished fourth and fifth with times of 15:59 and 16:12 respectively.
Another pair, Emily Hughes and Melissa Hughes finished 10th and 11th respectively. Emily came in at 17:48, while Melissa was clocked at 17:52.