Contributor: The Nerd
This is a unique meet where there are four mixed races separated by grades, as well as a 4k 'anyone-can-enter' race. The Papio South girls raced in the 4k this year and the Papio South varsity boys do not compete at this meet.
Since any of the four races could include varsity runners - plus the girls are mixed with boys - this meet doesn't necessarily offer a lot of tight competition. However, the sophomore boys and senior boys had a semblance of a lead pack at 2500 meters, so it was interesting to see who finished hard. Many teams train through this race, and it seems that fast times are more insightful than fast runners who run average times. The top 10 boys times at this meet:
Seth Fey, Sr, Millard West, 16:45
Piercze Marshall, Jr, Millard West, 17:05
Colby Erdkamp, Sr, Gretna, 17:05
Sam Kirchner, Sr, Millard West, 17:11
Evan Liewer, Sr, Gretna, 17:13
Dennis Chapman, So, Prep, 17:15
Porter Bickley, So, Millard West, 17:19
John Burns, Sr, Prep, 17:21
Joey Hartnett, Jr, Millard West, 17:28
Jack Witte, So, Millard West, 17:39
The top 10 girls times:
Claire White, So, Westside, 19:59
Isabelle Hartnett, Jr, Millard West, 20:17
Noelle Abels, Sr, Westside, 20:35
Reese Young-Oestmann, Sr, Westside, 20:45
Kara Muller, So, Bellevue West, 20:53
Molly Caruso, So, Millard North, 20:59
Isabella Bricker, Sr, Platteview, 21:04
Addy Walker, So, Gretna, 21:05
Brianna Hernandez, So, Millard West, 21:54
Kate Ebmeier, Fr, Millard West, 21:54
With many top runners training through this meet, we didn't expect blazing fast times. Consequently, Seth Fey's 16:45 on a hot, sunny day and difficult course was impressive. At the Class of Metro meet held in 2019, only Millard West's Adam Murphy ran a faster time. The winning time among all classes in 2018 was 17:12. Colby Erdkamp and Sam Kirchner didn't look particularly fresh or racing hard today, so I wouldn't take this race as an indication that their fitness levels are poor. A low-17:00 mark on a steamy day at Walnut Creek is a good race especially when the race means so little.
From a team perspective, the Millard West boys had five of the ten fastest times and, as expected, will likely be the team to beat in the Metro conference. Gretna also looked solid and Prep had a few bright spots.
On the girls side, Claire White easily won her sophomore race, but Kara Muller, Molly Caruso and Abby Walker also recorded solid times. Noelle Abels and Reese Young-Oestmann of Westside finished 3rd and 4th on times, and Westside is likely going to find their 4th and 5th placers in their sophomore class. Isabelle Hartnett won her junior race by nearly two minutes and she looks to be in fine form. Deavion Deleon of Papio South looked strong in winning the girls 4k, and her 15:28 likely would have translated to a 5k time around 20:00.
In terms of teams, the Millard West girls appears to have the best depth, Westside the best high sticks, and Gretna and Millard North are on the rise.
I'll post pictures on the www.facebook.com/preprunningnerd page in a few days. That will provide the photographic evidence needed to confirm that it was really freaking hot at the meet.