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Somerset cross country teams have differing goals for conference meet

Laura Smith has been a dedicated worker for the Somerset girls cross country team through her Spartan career.

For the Somerset boys, it’s all about the team.

The Spartan girls are looking for individual improvement.

That’s the plan for this Thursday’s Middle Border Conference Cross Country Meet, which will be held at Durand.

Somerset cross country coach Julie Mocadlo has high hopes for her boys team, hoping to see the Spartans finish in the top half of the field.

“If they ran their best, they have a chance to finish in the top three,” Mocadlo said.

That’s pretty heady respect for her team, considering there are just five boys on the team. The Spartans are hoping they have all five runners available. Noah Ashton had to miss last Tuesday’s Amery Invitational and the Spartans are hoping he’ll be healthy for the conference meet.

With four runners the Spartans didn’t count in the team standings at Amery, though they did make their presence known individually. That was led by top runners Brandon Mondor and Cole Harty, who placed 12th and 16th. They passed each other several times during the race. Mocadlo said that’s a good sign, because they work together to keep climbing up in the pack.

Ethan Baillargeon was Somerset’s third runner, placing 34th. Austin Headlee placed 75th.

Mocadlo said the boys each have roles on the team, with Headlee providing leadership as the most experienced runner.

“It’s a good mix,” she said.

The Spartan girls were led at Amery by Jesse Swanson, who finished 45th. Lauren Sandy and Katie Berg worked together, placing 52nd and 53rd. Maggie Becher was 71st and Laura Smith was 74th.

Mocadlo said she’d like to see Swanson get her time below the 18-minute mark at the conference meet, with hoes that Sandy and Berg can be close behind her.

The Spartan girls have been operating without several runners. Mocadlo said she hoped one or more of those girls would be capable of running by the conference meet.

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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