This past Saturday the Switzerland County Lady Pacer varsity cross country team had some strong performances in earning the South Dearborn Invitational title for Division II.
Division II is the “small school” division for the invitational, and Saturday’s competition featured: North Decatur, Centerville, Milan, Jac-Cen-Del, and Rising Sun.
The Lady Pacers dominated the invitational, with all five scoring runners in the top 20 overall.
Freshman Whitley Schirmer again led Switzerland County, finishing second overall in a time of 19:22. Robin Furnish was right behind, finishing fourth overall in a time of 20:28; and Cameron Ray finished seventh overall in a time of 22:16; Melissa Furnish was eighth overall in a time of 22:21; and Audrey Kinne rounded out the scoring with a 19th place overall finish in a time of 24:59.
Other Switzerland County runners included: Lisa Leoni, 20th place in a time of 25:03; and Emily Campbell, 21st place in a time of 25:16.
“We finally had everyone running to their full potential today,” Coach Adam Cole said. “And we had our number four runner back. That makes a huge difference. I knew that this team had the potential to be very good this year, and I think that we working toward making that a reality.”
In the boys’ race the Pacer squad was without its number one runner, Braden Burk, but the number two, Talen Taylor, picked up the slack by winning the Division II race in a time of 16:04.
The Pacers’ score of 97 placed them fourth behind champion Taylor; second place South Ripley; and third place Rising Sun.
The rest of the Pacer team finished strong: Sean Oatman finished 10th overall in a time of 18:08; Colton Penick was 22nd overall in a time of 19:06; Jordan Lay was 28th overall in a time of 19:36; and Cameron Papucci finished 36th overall in a time of 20:10.
Michael Scott was 43rd overall in a time of 21:46; and Matt Oatman finished 48th overall in a time of 23:29.
The course was in great shape at Historic Muscatatuck Park in North Vernon last Tuesday when the Pacers traveled to Jennings County for the Big Blue Invitational.
There was a total of 11 schools participating, including: Jennings County, Batesville, Madison, South Ripley, East Central, Switzerland County, Rising Sun, Austin, Trinity Lutheran, Scottsburg, and Southwestern.
The boys race was topped by Jonah Woods of Jennings County in a blazing 16:44.
He was followed by Switzerland County’s Talen Taylor, who ran second overall in a season-best time of 17:23.
Senior Braden Burk, Switzerland County’s top overall runner, has been nursing an injury, but still finished ninth overall in a time of 18:09. He was followed by Sean Oatman in 26th place in a time of 19:12; Colton Penick in 61st place in a time of 21:15; Jordan Lay in 62nd place in a time of 21:26; Cameron Papucci in 64th place in a time of 21:37; and Michael Scott finished in a time of 23:38.
As a team, Switzerland County finished sixth overall behind first place Jennings County, Batesville, Madison, South Ripley, and East Central.
In the girls race, Batesville dominated the event, with Lady Bulldog runners finishing first, second, third, fourth, sixth, seventh, and 12th overall.
Batesville’s attempt at a perfect score was broken up by Switzerland County’s Robin Furnish, who finished fifth overall in a time of 21:33.
Super freshman Whitley Schirmer did not participate in the invitational, as she recovered from a stomach ailment, or Batesville’s team total wouldn’t have been so dominant.
Other Lady Pacer runners included: Cameron Ray in 15th place in a time of 23:20; Emily Campbell in 39th place in a time of 26:49; Anja Rotter in 40th place in a time of 26:53; Audrey Kinne in 42nd place in a time of 27:29; Lisa Leoni in 45th place in a time of 27:46; and Adeli Kinne finished in a time of 32:16.
Switzerland County finished sixth overall behind Batesville, Jennings County, Southwestern, Madison, and East Central.
In the junior varsity race, Cory Proffitt finished in a time of 24:30; followed by Matt Oatman, who set a personal-best by finishing in 24:33; and Bea Narvarro who came across the line in 31:38.