Coyote runners shine at Manistee

Reed City's Olivia Thompson works her way up a hill.
Reed City's Olivia Thompson works her way up a hill.

REED CITY — Reed City’s cross country team competed at Manistee on Thursday.

“With some key runners either out sick or missing because of other school activities, the Reed City cross country teams as a whole didn’t score as high as they would have liked, but individual performances were some of the best of the season,” coach Rich Saladin said. “The girls finished fifth out of 10 teams while the boys finished seventh out of 11 teams.

“For the boys, my No. 3 and No. 5 runners were both out due to injury or sickness. The boys who were able to run did great. Brandon Wirth finished second overall with a time of 17:23, which was one minute and 12 seconds faster than last year.”

Calvin Rohde finished sixth in 18:12. Ryan Simmons was 46th (20:48.66)

“That was 31 seconds faster than last year,” Saladin said. “It’s awesome to see the progress from last year to this year and be able to compare times on the same course. Heaven Hurley ran a season best time and Jackie Chan also set a personal record today.”

The girls were without lead runner Abbi Kiaunis, who is participating in the state finals for equestrian, Saladin said. Taylor Harrison finished third overall with a time of 21:59.

Olivia Thompson was 14th overall (23:02) and Leigha Johnson (24:02, PR) and Abby Johnson (24:04) rounded out the medalists for the Coyotes.

“Taylor ran a great race with a very fast final 200 meters to take third,” Saladin said. “Olivia has had two very strong races in a row. She is peaking at the right time. Leigha Johnson set a personal record and took 1:28 off her time from last year here.

“It’s exciting for the kids and the coaches to see them earn those medals,” added Coach Susan Saladin.

The Coyotes competed Tuesday at White Cloud in the CSAA Jamboree to determine conference champions along with first team and honorable mention awards.

“We have a few that will be competing for those individual awards at conference,” Rich Saladin said prior to the event. “Brandon Wirth, Abbi Kiaunis, and Taylor Harrison all have a chance. It’s going to be a fun day.”

Reed City runs at the Chippewa Hills Invitational on Saturday.