Anna Stock – Mustangs Ahead
(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL) – Saturday the varsity boys and girl’s cross-country teams attended the FHSAA Regional meet in Punta Gorda. After qualifying the previous weekend at districts, the team competed for a spot at states next weekend in Tallahassee.
To qualify for states, teams must place in the top six spaces out of 15, or individual
runners must place in the top 15. The girls team raced first with three of the girls getting season personal records – junior Ellie Wietecha, freshman Aurora Melzer, and sophomore Sydney Granack. They finished only three points away from placing sixth and advancing to states.
The boys team raced shortly after and was led by senior Johnny Reid. The boys team placed eighth, however, Reid placed third and will go on to states next weekend.
Since Reid is the only runner continuing to states, the cross-country season has officially ended until August of next year.
Junior Ellie Wietecha described her race, “Leading up to the race the energy was so high, everyone was just so pumped to get out and race hard in hopes to qualify for states”
Wietecha also reacted to the team not making it to states, “When we found out we didn’t make it we were of course a little upset but then we all remembered why we even run in the first place and celebrated all the hard work we’ve achieved this season. Also, we were only three points from making it states, even though we still didn’t make it we were proud to even have gotten that close.”
Sophomore Gavin Laielli said, “We already knew that we had a slim chance of making it, a lot of top runners have been injured so just making it to regionals was a big accomplishment. I think that the most surprising thing about not making it to states is how positive everyone still is, it’s great to see our team come together in times like this and just support one another.”