De Soto girls not fazed by wet weather at meet
Severe weather washed out the Wamego Invitational last Saturday, but the De Soto cross country team still ran at a meet that day. De Soto instead ran at Jones Park in Emporia. The conditions, however, were definitely not ideal.
"That was really different than anything we had run in before," De Soto cross country coach Chris McAfee said of the muddy race. "They are all pretty excited for each race and after the race they were like, 'Oh, this is the coolest race.' The kids loved it. They had a great time."
McAfee said that De Soto had never run at Jones Park since he became coach, but despite the unfamiliar terrain and wet footing, the Wildcats had two strong showings. The girls squad finished in first place and the boys squad finished in sixth, respectively. And naturally, the race times were a little slower than usual.
"We knew coming in that it was going to be pretty sloppy and we talked about that on Friday," McAfee said. "The whole reason why we even wanted to go down there was because it wasn't about time, it was about competing.
"We thought we still needed to race because we have a lot of work to do as far as learning how to race. But time's - we just kind of threw those out the window and were just really worried about competing and getting into the race plan and trying to do their best."
Leading the way for the girls squad in the 4K run was Ellie Sheridan, who finished second with a time of 16:14. Teammate Lacey Erickson finished in third at 16:50 and Carly Stanley came in seventh with a run of 17:12. McAfee said Stanley's run was what gave De Soto the win.
"She wasn't having a good day," McAfee said. "I was really proud of her because she kept it together and did all she could do when she wasn't having her best day and that was really key If she doesn't keep it together and run the way she ran, we don't win that race.
"She was probably the difference maker. There were two Manhattan girls right behind her the whole time and she knew they were coming and she just never gave up and that was the difference."
For the boys squad, Trey Lind finished 23rd with a time of 19:07 and teammate Austin Hinchey came in one second later to finish 24th. Ben Burgweger finished 26th with a time of 19:14.
Next up for the Wildcats is a meet at Bonner Springs Saturday.