* Wright advances for Clay City girls
SEELEYVILLE -- Surprises were few at the Terre Haute North Sectional on Tuesday at The LaVern Gibson Championship Course.
Terre Haute South's boys and Terre Haute North's girls were dominating team winners as the Patriots' Chanli Mundy repeated as the girl's individual winner and Jackson Bertoli of Terre Haute South moved up a spot to win the boy's race.
Clay County will be well represented in Saturday's Bedford Regional as Northview's girls and boys were each in third-place with Clay City's boys placing fourth. The top-five teams advance to the regional along with the top-15 individuals. Clay City's girls advanced senior Kelsey Wright, who placed 12th.
Warm temperatures and gusting winds made for less than optimal conditions, but coaches were happy with the efforts from their runners.
"Finishing and starting was brutal today. It was hard to walk from the bus to the starting line to get the packet," Northview boy's coach Chad Smith joked. "It was a little windy, but times don't matter now, it's all about placing. I think if we go to Bedford and run a really good race, we have a good shot at moving on to the semi-state."
The Knights were paced by junior Nic Yocom, who placed fifth in a time of 17:13. Bertoli won the race in a time of 16:31 and the Braves captured three of the top-four spots overall.
Northview placed three runners in the top-16 overall as freshman Cam Trout placed 14th in 17:54 and Ian Heffner was 16th in 18:04.
"That's good news," Smith said of his top-three running close to each other. "We haven't had that all year. I don't think Nic (Yocom) will be very happy with his time or his place, but he's a perfectionist. He still ran a heck of a race and was in the top-five and gave us a good shot to accomplish our goal, which was to beat Terre Haute North. It was a lofty goal, but we're not far behind them. I knew we couldn't beat South, they are awfully strong. We'll try to beat North again on Saturday."
Travis Beil placed 32nd in 18:53 and Josh Johnson was 33rd in 18:56 to wrap up the Knights' team scoring.
Clay City boy's coach Cole Schroer agreed that the wind did affect the runners as the Eels were led by Parker Ames in 24th with a time of 18:19 and Blake Cochran in 26th in 18:41. Michael Brooks was 34th in 19:01 and Paiden Myers placed 35th in 19:02.
"The conditions weren't ideal, it was pretty windy," Schroer said. "The times were a little slower than we thought, but they knew who they had to beat and they got there. It worked out definitely.
"I know (Parker Ames) is going to be disappointed because his goal was to get top-15, but he'll get another shot this weekend," Schroer added.
In the girl's race, Mundy repeated as the winner with a time of 19:13 and the Patriots took the top-three spots and six of the top-eight.
Clay City's Wright advanced in her first appearance in the sectional by outracing a pair of competitors to the finish line to finish in 21:29. Ashley Reach placed 37th in 25:02 and Kiersten Mann took 43rd in 26:48. Tiara Skaggs was 47th and Kayla Sinders placed 50th.
Northview's girls advanced on the strength of a strong pack run as Ashley Kidwell placed 19th in 22:07, Emily Conrad was 21st in 22:23 and Hannah Zadeii placed 22nd in 22:59. Leeanna Knight crossed the finish line in 32nd position with a time of 24:31, Josie Stakman was 40th in 25:50, Eileen Stinnett was 41st and Maeghan Pilman placed 49th.
"I think (the team) did really well today considering the wind," Northview girl's coach Rexanne Laue said. "I was expecting third-place because I didn't think we could beat Terre Haute North or South. So I was hoping for third. Leanna (Knight) and Ashley Kidwell ran really good times."