Wenzel, Kulas help Kingsford to 2nd at Gladstone Invite

(Greg Kulas photo) KINGSFORD’S MELANIE WENZEL, right, and Sarah Kulas, left, finished second and third at Monday’s cross country meet.

By John Vrancic

For the Daily Press

FLAT ROCK — The Gladstone boys placed four runners among the top 12 but were unable to catch Marquette in their own invitational cross country meet here Monday.

Marquette, which placed seven in the top 11, took home the championship trophy with 21 points. Runner-up Gladstone scored 47, and Menominee placed third with 105.

The Marquette girls, placing five among the top 10, also won with 29 points, followed by Kingsford 73 and Gladstone 82.

Marquette sophomore Carson Vanderschaaf won the 3.1-mile race in 17 minutes, 25.7 seconds, followed by Gladstone sophomore Drew Hughes (17:30.8), Marquette junior Luke Janofski (17:46.4) and senior Lincoln Sager (17:59) and Gladstone junior Giovanni Mathews (18:11).

“It was a tough day to run, but the kids still ran good times,” said Marquette coach Kyle Detmers. “Carson and Drew had quite a battle. We appreciate (Gladstone coach) Gary Whitmer putting on this meet. This is a great cross country course with hills, fields and apple orchards. This is not like Marquette. You’re in the heartland down here.

Vanderschaaf said he adjusted his strategy on a day which featured sustained winds of about 30 miles an hour.

“My strategy for today was to hang with Drew and outkick him in the end,” he added. “The last uphill blocked the wind a little, and the downhill coming into the finish helped. The temperature (in the mid-50s) was good, but the wind made it challenging.”

Hughes had similar thoughts.

“It was a good temperature for running,” he said. “It was nice going with the wind, but going into it was a challenge. Going into the wind after the last uphill was tough. Although, I’m happy with my time.”

“Drew ran a real nice time,” said Braves’ coach Gary Whitmer. “A 17:30 in this wind is impressive. I didn’t think anybody would break 18 minutes today. They (Vanderschaaf and Hughes) really pushed each other. Gio is coming along. He definitely ran strong today.”

Marquette senior Olivia Moffitt won for the first time this year at 20:46.6.

“It’s very windy,” she said. “I took advantage of the wind when it was on my back. I felt it all the way up on the last hill, although the downhill going into the finish helped. I was happy with my time. This was my second best time this year.”

Kingsford senior Melanie Wenzel was runner-up (21:35.6), followed by classmate Sarah Kulas (21:59.2) and Marquette seniors Lillian Weycker (22:17.2) and Guinn Wuorinen (22:20.1).

“I felt pretty good during the race,” said Wenzel. “The last hill blocked the wind at first, but I could definitely feel it near the top. It was a pretty good temperature. This is better than running in the heat and humidity. This is a pretty nice course. It’s a little rocky in the beginning, which made it hard on the ankles. Otherwise, the footing was good.”

Boys: Marquette 21, Gladstone 47, Menominee 105, Rapid River and Munising 143, Stephenson 146, Norway 178, Manistique 188, North Central 223, Kingsford NTS.

Top 10 — 1, Carson Vanderschaaf, Marquette, 17:25.7; 2, Drew Hughes, Gladstone, 17:30.8; 3, Luke Janofski, Marquette, 17:46.4; 4, Lincoln Sager, Marquette, 17:59; 5, Giovanni Mathews, Gladstone, 18:11; 6, Colin Vanderschaaf, Marquette, 18:37.5; 7, Cully Papin, Marquette, 18:40.5; 9, Brady Ketzenberger, Marquette, 18:41.4; 10, Lucas Hughes, Gladstone, 18:47.4.

Girls: Marquette 29, Kingsford 73, Gladstone 82, Munising 89, Menominee 112, Stephenson 125. Norway, North Central, Rapid River, Manistique NTS.

Top 10 — 1, Olivia Moffitt, Marquette, 20:46.6; 2, Melanie Wenzel, Kingsford, 21:35.6; 3, Sarah Kulas, Kingsford, 21:59.2; 4, Lillian Weycker, Marquette, 22:17.2; 5, Guinn Wuorinen, Marquette, 22:20.1; 6, Hayden Buck, Menominee, 22:22.8; 7, Attica Brandt, Menominee, 22:26.4; 8, Samantha Strassler, Gladstone, 22:30; 9, Anna Grzelak, Marquette, 22:30.8; 10, Elodie Mahlerbe, Marquette, 22:34.1.


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