EVART – Evart's boys cross country team did it for the fourth straight year: they won the Highland Conference championship.

The Wildcats did it with experience, senior leadership and also with the talents of newcomers like freshman Santana Scott.

Scott and the Wildcats were at the Chippewa Hills Invitational on Saturday and took first place in their division.

“I've had my ups and downs,” Scott said, adding that while he got his career best time Saturday, “I think if it was colder, it would have helped a little more.”

Scott said it took him probably four meets to fully adjust to high school cross country and the longer course.

He's looking for a 17:11 before the season ends. A key will be his third mile, Scott indicated.

The Wildcats will be gearing for a regional title this weekend and hope to do well Nov. 3 at the state finals.

“I try to get up there, run a 5:20 first mile and go on from there,” Scott said, adding that as a team, winning the conference “is like the Tigers winning the (American League Championship series). We're happy about it but we're not satisfied.”

Clairese Clark, also a freshman, was Evart's third runner on Saturday for the girls and continues to have a strong season.

“I did all right, the course was really muddy,” Clark said. “I started (cross) in seventh grade. It's going all right. I had a hip injury and had to sit out.”

A 23:32 has been her best time and Clark is hoping for something in the 22s before the season ends.

The middle part of the race has been her strongest. “The sprint at the end” is what Clark said she needs to improve upon.