Steamboat boys cross-country qualifies for state |

Steamboat boys cross-country qualifies for state

Luke Graham

The Class 4A regional cross-country meet for boys and girls teams was held in Aspen on Saturday. The Steamboat Springs High School boys team finished third, which qualified the team for next weekend's state meet. The girls team did not qualify for state, though two runners ran close to their best times of the year.

— The Steamboat Springs High School boys cross-country team finished third at the regional meet Saturday in Aspen, punching its ticket for the state meet next weekend.

Sailors coach Andy Reust said the boys ran the race they needed to.

“The boys ran really well,” he said. “To make it to state, they just had to run solid. They didn’t have to run their best race. They just had to run a pretty solid race, and they all did.”

Gus Allen paced Steamboat with a fifth-place finish at 18:02. Jack Burger finished sixth with 18:09, and Asher Rohde finished 12th with 18:33.

Scott Powers, Jeff Sperry, Hunter Thompson and Byron Brane ran well for Steamboat and helped get the Sailors to state.

On the girls side, Katherine Lynch (23:04) and Cassady Daley (25:53) each ran close to their best times of the year, Reust said, but finished outside of the top 15 and didn’t qualify for state.

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The course was relatively flat but was mostly on grass. Add in a little snow, and Reust said it wasn’t the fastest course.

Still, Steamboat’s runners didn’t let the weather affect them.

“We’ve been telling (the runners) all year, all these races we’ve been doing is practice for this,” Reust said. “This is the one it all comes down to. They trained really well, and everybody came through. Everybody placed where we thought they would. In fact, they all came in a little bit ahead of where we wanted. Nobody came in below where we thought they would.”

Now Steamboat will prepare for the state meet Oct. 31 at Fossil Ridge High School in Fort Collins.

Reust said considering how young the boys team is – only two runners have been to state – he hasn’t put any expectations on the athletes.

He said right now, the team is just enjoying its accomplishments.

“It’s wide open,” he said. “I just want to see the guys go out and have fun. This team is young. Last year they were senior-dominated. To put tog-ether the season they did this year is pretty remarkable.”

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