By Lenny Sementi
Tuscola’s cross-country team took advantage of familiar surroundings this past Thursday at the Central Illinois Conference meet. The Warriors hosted the meet at Wimple Park while collecting some precious medals placing four runners on the All CIC squad, two on the boys and another pair on the girls team.
Coach Lacey Diaz’s state ranked boys team ended the day in second place overall in the eight-school league. Landing just a few points back of the first place Bulldogs of St Teresa also a ranked squad and in front of a very good Shelbyville group. Super sophs Josiah Hortin and Jackson Barrett led the way for the black and gold capturing the number two and threes spots respectively out of 44 runners both earning all CIC accolades.
Hortin crossed the line just a few ticks of the clock in front of Barrett rounding the three-mile course in 16 minutes and 45 seconds. Barrett was next into the chute clocking in at 16:45. Another sophomore Will Foltz was the third scorer and a near miss for all league honors for coach Diaz crossing the line in 17:50 taking 12th overall. Seniors Logan Wallace and Riley Nolan were the final two scorers finishing one second apart with an 18:17 and an 18:18.
Bryce Graves and Mason Veach served as the alternates for Tuscola both ending their runs under the 19 minute mark. Seniors Thomas Brown, John Hegarty, Mason Holmes and Jacob Middleton also toured the lake on the south side of Tuscola for the Warriors.
Girls coach Adam Crutchley’s team leaned on some underclassmen as well. Freshman Lia Patterson and Rylie Vanausdoll both landed securely in the top ten taking home All Conference honors as well. Patterson was fifth overall in a loaded field featuring a pair of state ranked teams finishing in 20:54. Vanausdoll was two places back in seventh posting a 21:14.
Senior Skylar Wilkins was the third to finish for coach Crutchley while Makenzie Hershberger and Lauren Woods rounded out the scoring, knotting the Warriors for third place as a team. Tuscola first alternate Reggan Smith broke the tie in virtual dead heat with Woods landing the Warriors in third as a team. Addy Ring and Kyla Gough competed as alternates as well.