A swarm of red Sundance jerseys flooded the Belle Fourche Country Club last Thursday at the annual cross country race. The lush green fairways, formidable hills, and large attendance made it the most exciting and competitive race of the SHS XC team’s fall schedule.
With a record-sized junior high team eleven-strong, the Sundance junior highers lined up with hundreds of runners from area schools. The girls’ race alone boasted 140 runners. What’s more, Sundance sixth grader Riley Marchant blasted the competition (in her first cross country race ever) to take 11th place with a 3000-meter time of 14 minutes, 18 seconds. Next came seventh grader Alexis Frazier in 15:24, with sixth graders Riley Banker and Willow Lindholm bringing it in at 18:11 and 23:11.
In the junior high boys’ race of 163 runners, eighth grader Seth Kammerer took 16th place to finish in 12:55. Deklan Gill was next in his first-ever race with a time of 13:23. Zach Duvall came in at 14:47, and Nate Schommer rounding out the Sundance crew in 20:52.The high school races, with smaller numbers of runners, were exciting to behold. In the junior varsity boys’ division, Sundance’s runners showed marked improvement. Owen Haiar led the Sundance pack, coming in at 23:05, with freshman Josh Pridgeon finishing next at 26:21. Klel Johnson took a minute off his previous race time, finishing in 27:47.
Sundance has one varsity female runner this year: team captain and sophomore Tori Wheeler. In the competitive varsity race of 60 girls, Tori ran her season record to take home the tenth place medal with a solid time of 22:34.
The four Sundance varsity boys were up next. Sundance freshman duo Isaiah Kammerer and Hunter Skeens shot across the finish line surrounded by juniors and seniors at 19:17 and 19:30 respectively – times that at this point in the season can position them to place within the top ten come state. Next up, Titus Schelling finished strong at 21:43, while junior and team captain Brody Skeens pushed through twin sprained ankles from a fall on the course crossing the tape at 27:47.
This Friday the high school runners make their way to the Wayne Chaney Memorial Cross Country Invitational in Gillette, a new course for the team. Sundance’s runners are excited to improve and compete well against Wyoming schools they haven’t lined up with yet this year.
Submitted by Mason Neiman