The path to state: Moffat County cross country teams runners-up at regionals
DELTA — It’s a rarity when Moffat County High School long distance runners don’t make it all the way to the state championships, and that certainly won’t be the case this year.
MCHS cross country teams are bound for state following a windy, wild day in Delta, where both Bulldog squads took second at the 3A Region 1 Meet.
“Both teams did just awesome,” said head coach Todd Trapp, noting a number of runners who hit their lowest times ever.
Carter Severson had his best finish in his three years at MCHS, placing second in a field of 111 boys, trailing Gunnison’s Colton Stice by only nine seconds and clocking in at 16 minutes, 55.4 seconds.
Severson said the Bulldog boys had Gunnison on their minds leading up to the meet. The Cowboys are the juggernauts of the Western Slope, having won the regional event in 2014, 2015 and 2016.
With three runners in the top five spots, Gunnison made it a four-peat, but Moffat County didn’t make it easy, as Hayden’s Chris Carrouth, Wyatt Mortenson, Coltyn Terry, Grant Wade, Keaton Knez, Josh Worster, Colin Jensen and AJ Barber gutted it out in Confluence Park.
Terry, Wade and Jensen all followed suit with Severson in setting new season bests.
After a season that has seen the lead change with nearly every meet, Hayden’s Makenna Knez was back in front for the Moffat County girls, setting a new personal record and the team’s season best at just a hair past 20 minutes and a sixth-place finish.
Steamboat Springs retained its championship from last season, led by Maggi Congdon, Winter Boese and Dasha Kuznetsova in the first three positions. But the Lady Bulldogs jumped up the team rankings from fourth to second place, as Kelsey McDiffett, Emaleigh Papierski, Madie Weber, Liberty Hippely, Allison Villard, Tate Severson and Raine Harrell made themselves known among the field of 102.
PR’s also went to Papierski, Weber, Severson and Harrell.
Both teams will return to the 3A State Championships Oct. 28 at Colorado Springs’ Norris Penrose Event Center.