Moffat County High School sophomore Maddy Jourgensen races down the south hill Saturday at Loudy-Simpson Park. Jourgensen placed second to fellow Bulldog Alicia Nelson in the girls heat during the Moffat County Invite.

Photo by John Vandelinder

Moffat County High School sophomore Maddy Jourgensen races down the south hill Saturday at Loudy-Simpson Park. Jourgensen placed second to fellow Bulldog Alicia Nelson in the girls heat during the Moffat County Invite.

One, two, three

Moffat County High School teams place third in home meet; girls finish in top 3 spots

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Moffat County High School cross-country coach Todd Trapp, left in red hat, addresses the boys runners Saturday at the start of the Moffat County Invite.

Moffat County Invite cross-country results

Loudy-Simpson Park, Craig

5K - grass/dirt

Top three team results

(team points in parenthesis)

Girls

1. Steamboat Springs (39)

2. Green River (60*)

3. Moffat County (60)

* placed second by virtue of tiebreaker

Boys

1. Green River (30)

2. Steamboat Springs (47)

3. Moffat County (48)

Top 10 Individual results

Girls

1. Alicia Nelson (MCHS) 19:35

2. Maddy Jourgensen (MCHS) 20:34

3. Nike Cleverly (MCHS) 21:49

4. Brittney Long (SSHS) 22:05

5. Natalie Geer (SSHS) 22:47

6. Anna Hartford (GRHS) 23:11

7. Jackie Tramp (GRHS) 23:27

8. Abby Goya (GRHS) 23:27

9. Jorid Halsnes (SSHS) 23:59

10. Liza Stout (SSHS) 24:04

Boys

1. Brady Goyn (GRHS) 17:13

2. John Cutter (SSHS) 17:28

3. Chris Zirkle (MCHS) 17:33

4. Charlie Stoddard (SSHS) 17:43

5. Cody Francom (GRHS) 17:52

6. Derek Wood (GRHS) 18:05

7. Colt Criswell (MCHS) 18:10

8. Isaac Harmon (GRHS) 18:16

9. Peter Daley (SSHS) 18:25

10. Dylan McCoy (GRHS) 18:27

Nike Cleverly had a plan.

Competing in her second-consecutive Moffat County High School Invitational cross-country meet, the Bulldog sophomore didn't want a repeat of last year's home meet.

Cleverly finished fourth last season, one spot behind Steamboat Springs' Brittney Long.

"I wanted to beat Brittney," Cleverly said. "I had to redeem myself."

She did.

Cleverly grabbed hold of the third spot about 1,000 meters into the girls race Saturday, and never looked back.

Her finish gave the MCHS girl's team a sweep of the top-three individual finishers.

Senior Alicia Nelson won the girls race in 19 minutes, 35 seconds, followed by sophomore Maddy Jourgensen (20:34).

Nelson's meet win was her third individual victory in five races this season.

"I just kind of think about ways to push through the pain," Nelson said. "It's hard sometimes" racing at home "because it feels like a practice. But, my goal has been to win because of all the hard work I put in over the summer."

Despite the individual success, the girls placed third overall as a team.

Steamboat Springs won the girls team title, as the Sailors had six runners cross the finish line before MCHS' fourth and fifth runners.

"We are still looking to close the gap between our three and four" runners, Bulldog coach Todd Trapp said. "We didn't have Britteny (Ivers) and Callie (Papoulas) because of injury. When they come back, they will push the four and five harder, and that will make us a stronger team."

The boys competed after the girls, with Bulldog runner Chris Zirkle taking the lead and setting the pace early.

"I wanted to win," Zirkle said. "I was excited to compete in a meet like this, and I wanted to see what I could do."

Zirkle tired midway through the race, getting passed by Green River's Brady Goyn - who won the individual title - and Steamboat Springs' John Cutter, to place third.

Cutter caught and passed Zirkle in the race's final 200 meters.

"I'm still learning how to race," the sophomore said. "Still, third is a good day."

Zirkle's time of 17:33 was tops among the MCHS boys team, while senior Colt Criswell's time of 18:10 earned him a seventh-place finish to round out MCHS' individual competitors in the top 10.

As a team, the boys finished third overall.

Green River placed first, Steamboat Springs, second.

"The boys team is definitely coming around," Trapp said. "We are getting better. Any time you finish in the top-3 is a good thing."

The Bulldogs have three meets remaining on their schedule before state regionals begin Oct. 18.

Next up, is a meet Saturday at Summit.

"We still have a lot of work to do even though we are halfway through our schedule," Trapp said. "With all the work we've put in, it's nice to see it out there when they are running."

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