‘Steamboat has arrived’: Sailor boys expected to keep pace with girls this fall | SteamboatToday.com

‘Steamboat has arrived’: Sailor boys expected to keep pace with girls this fall

Steamboat Springs' Sumner Cotton races at the cross country regionals on Thursday, Oct. 18 in Battle Mountain. Cotton placed 41st at the competition.
Lisa Renee Tumminello/courtesy

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — The Steamboat Springs High School girls cross country team has become a consistently high-performing group of athletes. 

Over the last five years, the Sailor ladies have placed 13th or higher as a team at state, navigating a switch from 4A to 3A and back again with grace and success. 

Meanwhile, the boys team will occasionally manage to qualify a small handful of individuals. Last fall, no boy runner qualified for state, while the girls qualified as a team, placing 13th. 

In 2019, head coach Lisa Renee Tumminello thinks that can change.

“They want to say Steamboat has arrived. We have some super talent on the team and I’m excited for that,” Tumminello said. “I’m excited for the boys, not to just be ‘the boys on the ladies Steamboat team,’ but to really hold their own.”

At the 2018 4A regional meet, junior Sumner Cotton paced Steamboat. Sophomore Bowden Tumminello narrowly missed the top 50, finishing 51st. None of the Sailors boys traveled to Colorado Springs for state. 

“Last year kind of went the same as a lot of the past years. We’ve done well, but haven’t made it to state,” Bowden Tumminello said. “We went to regionals, of course, which is great, but I think this year shows a lot of possibility. We’ve gained some really good guys and people are stepping up. The underclassmen are getting there, so I think we have a chance for the first time in a while.”

Lisa Renee Tumminello expects Cotton to lead the boys again, with others like senior Mitch Meissner and junior Jeremiah Kelley stepping up.

“Sumner Cotton, he was a super strong male for us and really led the team forward last year and has been very committed over the summer,” Tumminello said. 

Steamboat cross country

Aug. 31: at Battle Mountin Husky Invite Sept. 7: at Liberty Bell Invitational Sept. 14: at Eagle Valley Sept. 24: at Soroco School Night Invite Sept. 28: at Moffat County Oct. 4: at Delta Pantherfest Oct. 9: at Rifle Oct. 17: at Grand Junction for 4A Region 1 meet

As for the girls, senior Maggi Congdon will undoubtedly lead the way. She finished 26th at the state meet behind graduate Winter Boese, who took 18th. 

Senior Siera Harrison has traveled to state the past two years, but always as an alternate. She’s hoping to crack the top seven this season and run on the biggest stage. 

She also has one other goal in her final season in the red and black.

“I have a time curse,” she said. “I haven’t been able to break 21 minutes for a long time, so I want to break the 21-minute mark.”

Harrison has been working hard all summer, running the Hahns Peak Hill Climb with many of her teammates. 

Bowden Tumminello has done the same, hoping to beat his own personal-best time and finish a race in less than 18 minutes. 

While other teams were starting earlier in the month, the Sailors don’t open the season until Saturday, Aug. 31 at Maloit Park in Minturn, home of Battle Mountain. 

A week later, the team will travel to Littleton to compete in the Liberty Bell Invitational. For those wanting a personal record, that’s the meet to earn it. 

“We have done very well at Liberty Bell and it’s a gigantic invitational and a very fast course,” Tumminello said. “There’s some pavement and some pressed down track so that’s always one for our athletes to put their engines to the test and get that kind of racing experience in a gigantic competitive environment.”

To reach Shelby Reardon, call 970-871-4253, email sreardon@SteamboatPilot.com or follow her on Twitter @ByShelbyReardon.

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