Blake Zager has been one of the contributors on this year’s Wilmot cross country team (Mike Ramczyk/The Report).

By Jason Arndt

While five Wilmot Union High School boys cross country runners notched medals, which garnered them second place in the Oct. 5 Falcon Invite at Fox River Park, the Westosha Central boys showed steady improvement to finish seventh at their own meet.

The Panthers were led by Jordan Paulsen, who placed ninth at 17:41. Alex Wank, also with a time of 17:41, placed 10th.

Rounding out the Panther runners were Kody Molitor (11, 17:41.6), Blake Zager (19, 17:56.1) and Shawn Davis (20, 17:57.8).

“Alex Wank has been the boys’ leader for most of the season. Jordan Paulsen and Kody Molitor have been hot on his heels in recent races,” said Panthers’ coach Bill Dinegan. “These three continue to set the pace at races and we’ll need all of them as well as Shawn Davis and Blake Zager to keep moving up to get where we want to be.”

The Falcons, led by Colton Greenhill’s 17 minutes, 48.3 seconds, have slowly closed the gap between the front runner and the rest of the team.

“Colton has definitely stepped up as our front runner and is now consistently under 18,” said Falcons’ coach Keith Olsen. “The rest of the team has improved greatly in closing the gap making us more competitive.”

Among Falcons, finishing behind Greenhill, who took 15th, was Logan Sperling’s 18:00.3 to place 22nd.

Additionally, Jonathan Filiatrault has shown potential, Olsen said.

“Filiatrault has also been a consistent two, and Logan Sperling is finally running the way we always knew he could once he got healthy,” said Olsen, whose team tallied 179 points.

Other Falcon contributors were Kyle Pflug (46, 19:04.5), Isaac Sippy (56, 19:35.1) and Frank Quinones (57, 19:36.6).

Capra, Anderson lead area girls
Meanwhile, the Westosha Central girls team, which placed fifth of 12 schools received top 10 finishes from Meghan Capra and Heaven Andersen.

Capra finished second at 19:44.4 while Anderson was fourth at 20:12.2 to receive medals of their own.

“Meghan and Heaven are running great and have pretty much all season. Very solid and consistent,” Olsen said. “They consistently are in the top ten or more recently the top five which is where we want them to get accustomed to. ”

With consistent times, Olsen believes the two could make a run for the state meet.

“It will take a top 7 or 8 finish at sectionals to get to State,” he added.

The Falcons’ other contributors were Mackenzie Maccaux (30, 20:31.3), Kelsey Santos (43, 23:21.2) and Chelsea Lamp (23:58.3).

Panthers leading runner Tara Nopenz finished 12th at 21:05.2 to snag a medal.

“Tara is a fierce competitor on race day. She hasn’t had any other girls to push her hard in practice, so it becomes more difficult to create the urgency of races in a practice setting,” said Dinegan, who looks forward to seeing her compete at Saturday’s SLC meet.


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