The Berries Cross Country team finished third at the NCC Meet on Saturday. Harrison won with 32 points in a tight race over McCutcheon who had 34 points. The Berries were a solid third with 84 points. Lafayette Jeff finished fourth with 132, Anderson fifth with 173, Marion 181, Muncie Central 187, Kokomo 196, Richmond 233, and Arsenal Tech with 254.
Isabelle Crain (12th in 21:26) and Joseline Hernandez (14th in 21:53) were named to the All Conference team. Megan Benn was 18th in 22:24 and Cass Kestle was 19th in 22:29. Adria Higgins completed the Berry scoring in 21st with 22:43 and Carolayn Salamanca 23rd in 22:48. Kaitlyn Neal was 30th in 24:28.
“The team ran their best race of the year today. It was a total team effort. We had 4 personal records and 3 season’s best times on the varsity. They were very focused and determined going into the race. There was no talking during the warm up and the coaches noticed a different attitude – they were locked in and it showed up in the results. Isabelle Crain has cut over a minute in the last 3 weeks and is getting back to her old form. Joseline Hernandez destroyed her personal best time by almost a minute and broke into the 21’s for the first time. Just right on down the line – Megan Benn and Cass Kestle just missed being named all conference, but they ran gutsy races and were top 20. Adria Higgins laid it all out there and went out very aggressive in the first mile – we told them we wanted them to be aggressive at the start and she was probably a little too aggressive, but we’ll take that kind of effort any day. Our freshman, Carolayn Salamanca knocked off 56 seconds from when we were here 3 weeks ago and Kaitlyn Neal performed well in her first varsity race by lowering her personal best by 46 seconds,” said LHS coach Brian Morrill.
“We have our work cut out for us next week at Sectional to try to get the entire team to the Regional, but if we can come back next Saturday with the same kind of focus and intensity we showed today I think they have a shot. Up until today it looked slim, but now I think they will be in the mix,” said Morrill. The Berries are Sectional hosts next Saturday.
The Lady Berries JV team also finished third and they were led by Emily Viera with a fifth place finish in 23:22, Emilie Edwards was 13th in 23:53, Liz Smith 14th in 23:59, Makaya Robinson 18th in 24:22, and Emily Justice rounded out the Berry scoring in 20th place with a time of 24:26. Viera had the 7th best time on the day for the Berries and will run with the varsity in the Sectional next Saturday.