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Tiger boys win MBC cc championship

Mitchell, Slocum repeat as MBC individual champs

The New Richmond boys won the 2004 Middle Border Conference championship by one point. And that wasn't the closest team finish at the 2004 MBC meet.

While the team finishes were extremely close, the race for the individual championships was not. New Richmond's Ayla Mitchell and Alec Slocum repeated as the MBC individual champions, pulling away from their competition in the second half of their races.

For the New Richmond boys, it was a clean sweep at the high school level. The Tiger boys won the varsity and JV team championships. Slocum was the varsity boys champion and Trey Brotzler was the top finisher among the boys JV runners.

New Richmond's varsity boys won the team championship with 30 points, one point in front of Osceola. There was an even closer battle for the girls title.

Amery and Ellsworth tied for the championship, with Amery getting the trophy on a tie-breaker. The tie is broken on which team's sixth runner finishes the race first. New Richmond's girls were hoping to make a run at the MBC title, but they finished third, eight points behind the co-leaders.

The New Richmond boys had finished 40 points behind Osceola at the Amery Invitational, but they were also running without senior Zach Wolff at Amery. Coach Brent Aukema said it was the boys' goal to push themselves as hard as possible in the meet to win each of their meets.

"They pushed themselves hard the entire time," Aukema said. "They set that pace and then they held it."

The boys varsity won by getting their first five runners all to finish among the top 10 runners in the meet. Slocum finished first, then Zach Wolff was fourth, Brian Wojan seventh, Nate Hartigan eighth and Zach Johnson tenth. The Tigers were also in good position on any tie-breaker, with sixth runner Jordan Ongstad placing 13th.

Mitchell becomes a three-time Middle Border Conference cross country champion with her win at Ellsworth. As a freshman she finished third in the Big Rivers Conference championship race. Mitchell becomes the third three-time girls champion in Middle Border Conference history. New Richmond's Andrea Beuning won in 1987, 1989 and 1990 and Amery's Lynn Krisik won in 1976-1978.

Joining Mitchell in the top 10 for the Tigers was junior Natalie Johnson, who finished tenth.

Aukema said he was pleased that freshman Maggie Demulling made a substantial move up in the varsity race for the girls and that Courtney Nyberg and Lindsey Novitzke ran well in the JV race for the girls.

New Richmond also had the conference champion in the girls middle school race, where eighth grader Tess Zietlow won the conference title.

The Tigers now turn their sights to the Spooner Division 2 Sectional Meet, which will be held on Friday. The boys race will be run at 4 p.m. with the girls race at 4:45 p.m.

Aukema said both Tiger teams should be competing at the sectional meet with a high level of confidence. The boys are coming off a victory that should be excellent motivation. The girls team has earned its way into the state meet the past four years. The disappointment of not winning the conference meet might be the impetus that spurs the girls on to a successful race at the sectional meet.

Somerset runners

The Spartans came close to most of their goals for the meet.

One of the main goals for the Spartans was to get the boys team to finish in fourth place in the meet. The boys actually tied for fourth, but were edged out by Prescott on a tie-breaker.

"As far as I'm concerned, they reached their goal," said Somerset coach Diane Belter.

Josh Hecht was the top finisher for the Spartan boys, placing 22nd. Belter said that David Wenzel made the biggest time improvement by any Spartan boy in a race this season.

This was the first meet back for Matt Hanzlik and Todd Lippman after missing several weeks with health issues. They ran JV in the conference meet, but could move up to varsity for Friday's WIAA Division 2 Sectional Meet in Spooner.

A highlight for the Spartan boys came in the middle school race, where eighth grader Michael Meyer won a conference championship.

For the Spartan girls, freshman Cambrya Belter ran with the lead pack for most of the race, finishing sixth in her first MBC meet. Coach Belter said freshman Hanna Newman also ran well as Somerset's second runner, finishing 25th.

The goal for the Spartan boys is to finish in the upper half of the teams in Friday's Division 2 sectional race. For the Spartan girls, they are looking to see if Belter can work her way up in the pack to qualify for state as an individual.

Boys Team Scores: New Richmond 30, Osceola 31, Amery 72, Prescott 149, Somerset 149, Ellsworth 152, Baldwin-Woodville 162, Durand inc.

New Richmond runners

1. Alec Slocum 16:41; 4. Zach Wolff 17:27; 7. Brian Wojan 17:41; 8. Nate Hartigan 17:45; 10. Zach Johnson 17:54; 13. Jordan Ongstad 17:58; 19. Jerrod Berget 18:28

Somerset boys runners

22. Josh Hecht 18:46; 28. Steven Pesavent 19:02; 33. Tim Wenzel 19:12; 36. Tyler LeRoy 19:25; 37. Steve Vanasse 19:32; 51. Casey Colbeth 21:26; 52. David Wenzel 21:29

Girls Team Scores: Amery 59, Ellsworth 59, New Richmond 67, Osceola 75, Prescott 110, Somerset 140, Baldwin-Woodville inc., Durand inc.

New Richmond girls results

1. Ayla Mitchell 16:09; 10. Natalie Johnson 17:23; 17. Hannah Demulling 17:42; 20. Hannah Zimmerman 17:52; 23. Maggie Demulling 18:10; 26. Rachael Olson 18:25; 28. Liz Scheder 18:36

Somerset girls results

6. Cambrya Belter 17:04; 25. Hanna Newman 18:22; 39. Christi Schmitt 19:42; 43. Beth Baillargeon 21:06; 45. Jessie Pray 21:31

Boys JV Scores: New Richmond 27, Amery 54, Osceola 60, Baldwin-Woodville 85

New Richmond JV placewinners

1. Trey Brotzler 18:46; 4. Charles Donaldson 19:06; 6. Rob Gharrity 19:05; 7. James Hartigan 19:20; 8. Joey Sperling 19:24; 15. Chase Weaver 20:24; 16. Kai Abrahamson 20:27; 24. Jake Kleiner 21:32; 25. Matt Tschudy 21:38; 31. Cody Greene 22:21

Somerset JV placewinners

9. Matt Hanzlik 19:26; 13. Matt Plourde 20:12; 21. Todd Lippman 21:18

Girls JV Team Scores: Amery 15

New Richmond JV placewinners

2. Courtney Nyberg 18:22; 3. Lindsay Novitzke 18:37; 6. Joanna Ongstad 18:51; 15. Beth Morris 20:53

Girls Middle School Team Scores: New Richmond 55, Ellsworth 61, Somerset 69, Amery 73, Baldwin-Woodville 83

New Richmond MS placewinners

1. Tess Zietlow 9:38; 4. Hannah Utzman 9:50; 5. McKenzie Kelly 10:06; 24. Maria Hartigan 11:08; 27. Jenna Leahy 11:25; 29. Maria Soderquist 11:41; 43. Jenna Goodrich 12:42; 44. Sarah Harrington 13:08

Somerset MS placewinners

10. Megan Mitchell 10:35; 11. Gina Hanzlik 10:35; 12. Johanna Smith 10:35; 22. Shay Ottman 11:00; 23. Amy Wells 11:01; 26. Alexandra Butler 11:20; 45. Katie Carlson 13:23; 47. Cady Meschke 13:23

Boys Middle School Team Scores: Ellsworth 18, New Richmond 41

New Richmond MS placewinners

7. Nick Stenske 10:04; 8. Mitchell VanderWyst 10:07; 9. Zeb Johnson 10:16; 16. Hunter Feltman 10:45; 23. Collin Lieffort 13:43

Somerset MS placewinners

1. Michael Meyer 9:22; 21. Ryan Hansch 12:19

Dave Newman
Dave Newman has been the sports editor at the New Richmond News since 1988. He has covered the action in the Middle Border Conference, Dunn-St. Croix Conference and Big Rivers Conference for nearly 30 years.
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