For both the Havre High boys and girls cross country teams, things really couldn’t have gone any better this weekend.
On Saturday the Central A Blue Ponies hosted the Havre Invitational at the Montana State University-Northern campus in Havre. And in two very good performances, the HHS boys finished fifth with 95 points while the girls finished as the No. 3 team with 87 points.
“Today was a great day,” Havre High head coach Kyle Fisher said. “It was a great day for Blue Pony cross country. With all the kids running their best times of the season and some of their careers, I can’t ask for anything else. I am proud of them all.”
The HHS girls squad continues to impress.
And even though the conference rival Lewistown Golden Eagles finished ahead of the Ponies yet again, Havre continues to gain ground on one of the top teams in the conference and state.
The entire girls lineup turned in solid times for HHS. The Ponies continue to show vast improvements every week, and continue to shave off seconds and even minutes from their previous bests. The Ponies are doing everything right, and if they continue to do so, the Eagles won’t outrun the Ponies for much longer.
“I am very proud of our girls,” Fisher said. “We are here competing with them (Lewistown) and we beat Browning out, a conference rival. Our girls stepped up and did a nice job for us today. That Lewistown team is a great team, and it’s one of those teams where we set the bar and that’s where we want to get to, to be able to run and compete with them. Our kids are closing the distance on them every week.”
Katie Christianson led the way once again, and did so with a personal best of 19:37. This was the first time Christianson was able to break into the 19-minute mark, and in doing so she grabbed the No. 6 finish overall. Trisha Kinsella finished in the No. 17 spot with a time of 20:25, while Shelby O’Neil finished in the No. 24 spot with a time of 20:51. Ashlynn Van Voast finished in the No. 25 spot with a time of 21:05 and Larissa Price finished in the No. 29 spot with a time of 21:17. Mikell Kinsella also finished in the No. 34 spot with a time of 21:48.
“That was huge for her (Christianson),” Fisher said. “And just a mental feat for all of our girls. They ran the best times they have ran all year bar none and I am very proud of all of them.”
Brittanee Korb also ran well for the Ponies, but nearly had to drop out of the race midway through. Korb ran very well to start and was primed to finish as the Ponies' second or third-place runner. But as Korb pushed through the tough course as well as the mid 80’s heat, she collapsed midway through the race. But after gathering herself, Korb was able to finish the race and still turn in a very solid time for the Ponies.
“I was really proud with how she finished,” Fisher said. “She picked it back up and ran one of the better times she has ran.”
For the HHS boys, Kendall Murie was once again a standout performer. But as the whole team continues to improve, every boy turned in a new personal best as the Ponies went on to turn in yet another solid outing.
“We are still progressing,” Murie said. “Most of our boys are still improving and their times are getting better every week. I am excited to see where we are at.”
Murie turned in a personal best for this season. But finishing with a time of 15:49, and finishing in the No. 3 spot overall, Murie also turned in a career best.
“He has never been in the 15’s before in his life,” Fisher said. “He is finding his stride right now and he is doing a great job for us.”
“I felt pretty good,” Murie added. “I was kind of sore, but I just had to shrug it off and did what I could today. It gradually got hot, but I just pushed through it.”
Marc Klimas and the rest of the Ponies also ran well on Saturday. But they are still looking to improve their pack time. Klimas finished in 16:26 and finished in the No. 6 spot. Greg Rhines was the third Pony finisher and finished in 17:20. Dolan Tuss finished in 17:47, while Dillon Seely finished in 18:23, Chazley Hulett finished in 18:29 and Daniel Tuss finished in 18:30.
“All the boys, all the way through Greg Rhines and Dolan Tuss, and everybody, they did a great job today,” Fisher said. “Greg (Rhines) is closing that gap (between him and Klimas). Today he ran in the 17’s and he has never done that. But we really need three more kids to run in the 17’s and we will be good.”
The Ponies are back in action on Thursday when they travel to Helena for the Helena Preview Meet.
Team scores — 1. Browning 63; 2. Lewistown 75; 3. Glasgow 85; 4. Cut Bank 90; 5. Havre 95; 6. Wetaskiwin, AB 134; 7. Dodson 148; 8. Harlem 238.
Top 30 individuals
1. Tyler Smith, WET, 15:39.3; 2. Teran Alears, LEW, 15:45.9; 3. Kendall Murie, Havre, 15:49.8; 4. Emerson Connelly, BRO, 15:55.2; 5. Jimmy Martin, Dod, 16:20.3; 6. Marc Klimas, Havre, 16:25.8; 7. Gage Foss, Lew, 16:30.4; 8. Zach Altenburg, CB, 16:36.4; 9. Billy Sharp, Bro, 16:46.0; 10. Nick Bear, Dod, 16:52.8; 11. Derek Hopkins, Glas, 16:54.3; 12. Hans Pederson, Lew, 16:54.8; 13. Myles Murray, Bro, 17:04.1; 14. Braden Hallock, Glas, 17:05.9; 15. Brandon Trombley, Bro, 17:07.1; 16. Luke Zeiger, Gla, 17:08.0; 17. Zach Evans, CB, 17:10.7; 18. Jacob D'Isidoro, CB, 17:14.7; 19. Jonathan Braaten, Gla, 17:15.6; 20. Nate Kavanagh, CB, 17:19.3; 21. Aidan Stansberry, Lew, 17:19.8; 22. Robert Juarez, Bro, 17:20.1; 23. Dakota Robinson, Wolf Point, 17:26.9; 24. Greg Rhines, Havre, 17:32.0; 25. Ben Broadbent, WET, 17:32.2; 26. Matt Phillips, Gla, 17:34.4; 27. Guy Deroche, Bro, 17:38.9; 28. Kaz Harwood, CB, 17:41.7; 29. Dolan Tuss, Havre, 17:47.5; 30. Dustin Hicks, Belt/Centerville, 17:50.4.
Team scores — 1. Lewistown 45; 2. Glasgow 54; 3. Havre 87; 4. Browning 99; 5. Malta 130; 6. Belt-Centerville 131; 7. Cut Bank 169.
Top 30 individuals
1. Brook Rodgers, Lew, 18:39.7; 2. Nicole Arnold, Malta, 18:58.0; 3. Natasha Smallwood, Wetaskiwin, 19:19.8; 4. Jami Johnson, Gla, 19:212.5; 5. Justine Reitsma, Wet, 19:29.7; 6. Katie Christianson, Havre, 19:37.3; 7. Mariah Gondeiro, B-CV, 19:44.2; 8. Shanell Creemedicine, Bro, 19:47.3; 9. Esperanza Battrick, Lew, 19:51.1; 10. Rachael Zeiger, Gla, 19:52.6; 11. Ingrid Stansberry, Lew, 19:53.0; 12. Dalainy Tedesco, Lew, 19:53.5; 13. Shay Tatsey, Bro, 20:00.1; 14. Emma Fewer, Gla, 20:08.3; 15. Kelley McCafferty, B-CV, 20:18.4; 16. Alyssa Sanders, Gla, 20:23.2; 17. Patricia Kinsella, Havre, 20:25.8; 18. Holly Sullivan, Malta, 20:30.0; 19. Gwynn Simeniuk, Gla, 20:38.6; 20. McKenzie Fradley, Lew, 20:39.6; 21. Jayce Carlson, Bro, 20:42.3; 22. Rose Reyling, Gla, 20:44.0; 23. Tiar'e Littlehead, Wolf Point, 20:44.7; 24. Shelby O'Neil, Havre, 20:51.9; 25. Ashlynn Van Voast, Havre, 21:05.1; 26. Sienna Dailey, Gla, 21:08.4; 27. Hannah Hafner, WP, 21:13.6; 28. Makayla Scott, Lew, 21:15.2; 29. Larissa Price, Havre, 21:17.7; 30. Josie Walters, Lew, 21:27.4.
Kendall Murie 15:49; Marc Klimas 16:25; Greg Rhines 17:32; Dolan Tuss 17:47; Dillon Seely 18:23; Chazley Hulett 18:29; Daniel Hanson 18:30.
Katie Christianson 19:37; Trisha Kinsella 20:25; Shelby O’Neil 20:51; Ashlynn Van Voast 21:05; Larissa Price 21:17; Mikell Kinsella 21:48; Brittanee Korb 21:58
Boys Junior Varsity
Derek Van Dessell 18:29; Desmond Fialkosky 18:31; Ty Bauer 19:21; William Milligan 19:58; Matt Cole 20:48; Nick Rhines 21:01; Desmond Parker 21:03; Matt Hanley 21:20; Austin After Buffalo 22:30; Dustin Seeley 24:24
Girls Junior Varsity
Brooke Jappe 22:00; Cortney Bricker 22:12; Paige Sedahl 23:26; Julie McKinney 23:27; Alaynna Gray 23:40; Mariah Zandhusien 24:13; Madison Hanson 24:18; Dylann Williams 24:28; Michelle Winchell 25:20; Lauren Scofield 25:21; Neya Bischoff 25:28; Annie Standing Rock 29:44.