Area Runners Advance to State Competition

Gillett Boys Advance 
to State, Kaczmarek 
is Individual Qualifier
The Gillett Tigers’ bested Marathon by a single point to qualify for team state from Friday’s sectional in Athens.
The hosts from Athens took the top spot with 56 points, followed by Gillett with 70 and Marathon with 71. Only the top two teams of 11 advance to state.
One point is assigned for the place earned by each of the top five runners. For example, the Tigers’ Alex Peterson took first place of 91 runners and earned one point. The second-place finisher among runners on teams of five or more runners would earn two points, and so on.
Peterson finished the race in 16 minutes, 18.6 seconds to capture gold.
Evan Peterson was fourth overall with a time of 17:55.5, Braydin Wendorf took eighth (17:31.3), Scott Herroux placed 33rd (19:35.8), Chase Anderson was 35th (19:49.1), Nash Stage took 60th (20:52.9), and Zander Davis came in 77th (22:15.2).
“My first reaction to the boys’ results was ‘whew!’ When you make it by a margin of one point, It’s a great example that every place counts,” Gillett coach Bill DeJung said. “If Bradyin, Scott, and Chase don’t pass some guys the last 100 meters, we don’t qualify.”
The top five runners not on a qualifying team also advance to state. Gillett’s Carleigh Kaczmarek took second in the field of 92 runners with a time of 20 minutes, 15.9 seconds, the second individual qualifier.
“Carleigh, despite not feeling well, ran with great determination to finish second,” DeJung said. “It is a testament to her training and mental toughness.”
It’s Kaczmarek and Alex Peterson’s third trip to state and Evan Peterson’s fourth.
State is held at the Ridges Golf Course in Wisconsin Rapids. Kaczmarek will take off at 12 p.m. on Saturday and the boys’ Division 3 race starts at 2 p.m.
“I’m extremely proud of all the kids and look forward to Saturday,” DeJung said.
Gillett’s girls were fifth of nine teams, with Bonduel and Colby advancing as teams. Sophia Limberg took 24th (22:40.9), Cheyenne Krueger took 42nd (23:46.7), Kasey Hansen took 46th (24:05.9), Laney Debauch took 47th (24:08), Lily Hansen was 51st (24:35.3), and Megan Wagner finished 92nd (41:33.7).
In the boys’ race, Goodman-Pembine’s Kody Stahley missed out on state by three spots, taking 14th (18:07.8). The Patriots had four runners, one short of the number required for a team score.
Caleb Meissner came in 32nd (19:28.8), Kyle Braaten took 78th (22:16.6), and Tristan Owens placed 79th (22:19.2).
Coleman’s John Nowak missed the state qualification spots by four places, taking 15th (18:17.6). Coleman was 10th as a team.
Conner Markiewicz took 34th (19:44.2), Chase Gruber took 42nd (20:06.6), Jake Cullinane-Maleport was 68th (21:36.1), and Wyatt Van Haren took 80th (22:20.4).
Oconto’s boys were eighth. Kadin Baxter led the team with a 26th-place finish (18:51.7), Daniel Alwin took 45th (20:12.3), Jackson Martin took 49th (20:23), Owen Bryzozowski took 53rd (20:30), Angel Jordan took 54th (20:33.2), and Bryton Fuller finished 59th (20:50.6).
Lena/Saint Thomas Aquinas Academy had one runner, Eric Kosch, who finished 48th (20:22.1).
Crivitz had four runners. Ben Brown took 29th (19:13.7), James Caine was 43rd (20:07.1), Phillip Angel took 87th (24:52.6), and Brock Banaszak came in 89th (25:12.2).
Florence had two boys in the race. Matt Bousley took 73rd (21:54.2) and Blake Smith was 84th (23:23.9).
Suring took eighth as a girls team. Georgia Gerndt took 16th (21:48.4), Ginger Gerndt took 34th (23:23.2), Hailey Thomson took 59th (25:17.6), Allyson Seibert took 67th (25:52.6), Morgan Suring took 68th (26:07.2), and Samantha Seibert was 80th (27:33.2).
Oconto’s girls team was ninth. Addisyn Viestenz took 30th (22:57.3), Madilyn Thomson took 52nd (24:43.2), Elizabeth Finger was 55th (24:51.9), June Iza took 57th (25:06.2), Alex Hyland took 71st (26:27.4), Hayden Beekman was 82nd (28:22.4), and Savannah Brill placed 85th (28:49).
Coleman, Florence, and Goodman-Pembine, and Lena/Saint Thomas Aquinas Academy had four runners apiece in the girls’ race.
For G-P, Joley Berger took 21st (22:17.2), Krystal Moddie took 43rd (23:47.1), Kenza Stahley finished 61st (25:21.1), and Aubry Larson came in 83rd (28:37.5).
Florence was led by Abbey Tripp, who was 39th (23:41.2). Ingrid Holt took 73rd (26:37.9), Leighton Lambert was 78th (27:20.2), and Rebecca Eller took 91st (35:21.7).
Coleman’s Kiersten Jensen came in 25th (22:45.9), Clare Gappa was 50th (24:33.7), GraceLynn Nowak took 56th (25:05.4), and Aliza Jensen placed 89th (30:29.5).
Lena/STAA’s Haley VanArk took 70th (26:16), Miriam Alberts was 81st (27:50.6), Chaela Rabas took 84th (28:38.1), and Kali Fischer took 90th (31:47.8).
Nelson and Adams 
Earn State Start Times, 
Area Girls Shutout
Peshtigo’s Andrew Nelson and Oconto Falls’ Ben Adams are headed to the Division 2 State Cross Country Championship from the Oconto Falls sectional.
The top two teams and top five individual finishers not on qualifying teams advanced to state.
Lakeland Union and Shawano Community moved onto state as teams. Adams was sixth overall among individuals, including third of those not on team qualifiers. Nelson took seventh overall.
Adams finished in 17 minutes, 21.5 seconds and Nelson ran a 17-minute, 31.9-second time.
The state race will take place on Saturday at Ridges Golf Course in Wisconsin Rapids. The girls’ Division 2 race takes off at 12:40 p.m. and the boys start at 2:35 p.m.
“I can’t wait to watch Andrew compete next weekend,” Peshtigo coach Derek Smith said. “His work ethic and passion for the sport, he deserves everything he has earned this year.”
It will be Nelson’s second trip to state. He took 89th in Wisconsin Rapids last year with a time of 18:15.6. 
Peshtigo’s boys took eighth at sectionals and Oconto Falls was ninth. Marinette’s boys were 13th of 15.
For the Bulldogs, Reese Yunke was 20th (18:26.9), Cole Grabian took 51st (19:50.9), Liam Smith took 54th (19:59), Eli Berndt was 62nd (20:25.3), Marshall Bennett took 80th (21:56.8), and Braeden Murphy came in 92nd (25:22).
Grabian, Bennett, Murphy, and Nelson are all seniors for Peshtigo.
After Adams, Oconto Falls’ Griffin Kopke took 28th (18:43.2), Evan Yuma was 35th (19:08.3), Brant Laluzerne took 56th (20:09.5), Emerson Rice took 69th (20:38.5), Layton Rickert was 79th (21:33.6), and Garrett Ganter took 86th (22:52.1). 
All of the Panther runners will be back next year. Ganter is a junior and the rest of the team is made up of sophomores.
Marinette’s David Jezowski took 32nd (18:52.6), Jackson Draheim took 66th (20:31.9), Hunter Schneider took 75th (21:06.5), Dylan Demmith placed 76th (21:06.5), Aidan Anderson was 85th (22:50.1), Evan Reines took 89th (23:11.5), and Rodney Hollar came in 93rd (25:22.9). 
Jezowski is a senior, but the rest of the Marinette boys will return to the fold in 2023.
Shawano and Freedom’s girls moved on to state. Oconto Falls’ girls narrowly missed out, finishing fourth in the team standings.
Hannah Ludemann took 13th individually, three places from individual qualification. She finished in 21 minutes, 1 second. Brooke Hodkiewicz took 15th (21:15.5), Hailey Delzer was 21st (21:35.1), Maddy Przybylski was 24th (21:52.4), Mackenzie Lotto took 34th (22:24.6), Ava Hodkiewicz took 36th (22:27.8), and Sydney Bell finished 45th (22:42.1). Bell is the team’s only senior.
“The girls team ran a great race but were only able to capture 4th place behind state-ranked Shawano and Freedom,” Oconto Falls coach Lon Ludemann said. “They packed together well but just fell short.”
Peshtigo’s girls were seventh as a team. Marinette took 13th.
For Peshtigo, Rachel Nelson was close to individual qualification, taking 11th. She was sixth place of individual runners not on state-qualifying teams.
She finished in 20:47.4. Holly Pesch took 23rd (21:49.9), Shayla Boettcher took 30th (22:16.3), Alaina Archambault was 33rd (22:23.5), Addison Olson took 58th (23:49.5), Kayla Murphy took 71st (24:40), and Kylie Villas came in 87th (30:42.4).
Nelson is just a freshman. Villas, a junior, is the only runner on the team that isn’t a freshman or sophomore.
“We are young and that is promising for the future success of this team,” coach Smith said. “I’m so proud of our kids this year. So many accomplishments, from conference championships to another individual state qualifier.”
For Marinette, Julia Cano Hidalgo took 49th (23:02.7), Addison Lacy took 62nd (23:56.6), Madison Kunick took 65th (24:01.6), Lauren Sadowski took 71st (24:39), Karissa Valitchka took 82nd (26:45.5), and Lacy Carviou came in 84th (27:58.5). Valitchka is the lone senior of the Marinette girls.
Brandt Paces Maroons
at U.P. Finals
Menominee senior Attica Brandt was ninth of 54 runners at Saturday’s MHSAA UP Division 1 Finals in Gladstone.
Brandt raced to a time of 21 minutes, 32.07 seconds, which was within .1 seconds of her season-best time she ran at the Great Northern Conference meet on Oct. 13.
Fellow senior Mikakah Mead was the only other Maroon in the girls race. She took 48th (26:29.63).
Menominee’s boys took eighth of nine teams. Marquette captured both the girls’ and boys’ team titles.
For Menominee, Steven Zavala was 32nd (19:41.46), Aden Short took 40th (20:18.78, Brock Murphy took 41st (20:31.69), Ethan Howarth took 51st (22:04.33), Brayden Bourion came in 52nd (22:08.87), and Henry Zuhels was 53rd (22:17.99).
Zavala, Short, and Murphy are seniors.


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