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CROSS COUNTRY: Clarkston, Oxford, Lake Orion advance teams to state finals

| November 2, 2016 | Comments (0)

Adams’ Schram cruises to individual regional title

BY DAN STICKRADT

SENIOR EDITOR

dan.stickradt@northoaklandsports.com

Twitter: @LocalSportsFans

NEW BALTIMORE — With everything on the line, the OAA Red Division schools more than excelled at the Division 1 regional at New Baltimore Anchor Bay.

Four of the top seven teams from the boys meet and five of the top six squads in the girls meet called the OAA-Red home.

The top three teams, any squad registering at least four top 20 performers and the top 15 individuals from each region advance to the Lower Peninsula Division 1 state finals at Michigan Speedway near Brooklyn, Mich.

“We felt we could win this regional and we stepped up and ran great,” said Clarkston girls coach Kevin Breen.

Clarkston girls defended their regional title, topping the 16-school field with 52 points — the Wolves eighth regional since 2000.

Oxford was a surprising second with 88 points and Romeo, the only non-OAA school in the top six, edged into the third position with 108 points.

Rochester Adams (115), Lake Orion (144) and injury-plagued Rochester (165) all missed the cut in a crowded regional of quality teams. Rochester Stoney Creek finished back in the pack in 11th (274 points).

“If you would have told me in August that we would have qualified for the state meet in this regional and I would have laughed,” admitted first-year Oxford coach Norm Petersimes. “There are so many good teams in our league and in our regional. We have a young team that improved so much over the past couple of months that it’s incredible. We were sixth of seven teams at our first league jamboree in (early September).”

On the muddy and sloppy course on Oct. 29, Macomb L’Anse Creuse North’s Kareena Duffey clocked 18:51 to win comfortably. Clarkston had four finishers in the top 10 to help them finish ahead of the pack.

Eliabeth Dalrymple (fourth), Mallory Ferguson (fifth), Emily Ferguson (seventh) and Mia Patria (ninth) led the Wolves.

Bridget Cusick (14th), Colleen Henderson (16th), Ashley Vican (17th) and Paige Miller (19th) led Oxford to the runner-up finish.

Individually, Lake Orion’s Allison Sherman (third) and Emily Leipold (11th), Rochester’s Camryn Remick (ninth) and Adams’ Jordyn Houle (12th) and Maddie Dessey (13th) all made the cut.

Meanwhile, Clarkston’s boys continued its best season dating back to the 1990s. The Wolves captured their first regional title since 1999 with 82 points.

Lake Orion was a close second with 90 points and Macomb Dakota claimed third with 65 points, as the trio heads to state.

Romeo (125), Rochester Adams (158), Utica Eisenhower (165) and Oxford (185) grabbed the next four slots in the team standings, while Stoney Creek (253) and Rochester (253) finished tied for 10th.

Using the pack mentality, Clarkston had all five point scorers finish amongst the top 22 finishers in a field of 108 runners. William Eisert (eighth), Shawn Slater (16th), Brendan Favazza (1th), Nate Sesti (19th) and Mika Juuhl (22nd) led the Wolves.

“Based on how we’ve run this season, I thought we’d have a very good chance to win this regional. And it’s been a long time since Clarkston’s boys have won a regional,” said first-year Clarkston boys coach Larry Adams, who previously coach at Rochester for there decades. “I think they got a taste of it qualifying last season. But I think they are capable of being a top 10 team in the state on a good day. And we’re young, too. Two of our top runners are freshman.”

Lake Orion, despite missing two key runners, is finally hitting its stride.

“We finally had five runners that ran well on the same day. We were finally on the same page,” said Lake Orion coach Stan Ford. “We still have a runner that has mono and another that has fought through an injury. He ran (at the regional) but is not 100 percent. But we still had five runners that had a good race. This might be the best we’ve run in a while.”

Michael Jarvis (third), Ryan Mulcahy (14th) and Jack Everts (18th) led Lake Orion to the runner up finish.

Individually, Adams senior Matt Schram led virtually the whole race and clocked 15:49 in unfavorable conditions. Schram is one of the state’s top overall runners, having finished in the top five at every race this season, and hopes to contend for a state title.

“I got out into the lead and held it. The course wasn’t the greatest shape, so (everyone’s time) was off. But I have a lot of confidence going (into the state meet). My goal is to try to be up there with the lead pack and try to win it at the end.”

Individually, Stoney Creek’s Harrison Steed (second) and Rochester’s Austin Remick (fifth and Kyle Johnson (ninth) also qualified with top 15 finishes.

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Category: Clarkston, Featured Articles, High School, Lake Orion, Prep Wraps, Rochester, Rochester Adams, Rochester Stoney Creek

About Dan Stickradt: DAN STICKRADT | SENIOR EDITOR dan.stickradt@northoaklandsports.com View author profile.

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