By Tiffany L. Rehbein
Behind swift-footed junior Jennie Peterson and pack leader senior Jen Dibblee, the Havre High School cross country team looks to pose as tough competition at the Glasgow Invitational Saturday.
The Blue Ponies finished in fifth place last weekend at Belgrade behind two AA schools and two A schools. Glasgow looks to host more Class B schools this weekend.
The Ponies will run a flat, three-mile course at Glasgow, and first-year head coach Kim Ray said she will be looking for a tighter pack time that will, in turn, propel the Ponies to a higher overall finish.
We need to work on pulling our third, fourth and fifth runners closer, Ray said.
Jennie Peterson, who placed first overall at the Belgrade Invite with a time of 21:28, looks to lead the Ponies again this weekend.
Senior Jen Dibblee, the No. 2 runner, looks to lead the pack runners. Dibblee finished 23rd last weekend with a time of 23:25. Havres third, fourth and fifth runners were more than one minute slower than Dibblee.
We need to tighten that gap, Ray said.
In addition to Peterson and Dibblee, freshman Jenna Baltrusch, who did not run at Belgrade, and junior Jillian Brough will run varsity for the Ponies. Carly Toldness, Nikki Grant and Alicia Rundquist round out the roster for Havre.
During the past four practices, the Blue Ponies also have been focusing on improving their time in the last mile of the course.
We need to get that last mile time down, Ray said.
Each girl on the team has run a slower third mile than the first two run. Ray said she expects the flatter Glasgow course to excite faster times overall in the girls.
The junior varsity team will run and the junior high team, behind assistant coach Christin Smith, will run in its first meet of the year.