Evart runners prepare for Pine River meet Saturday

EVART – The Evart Wildcats will take a break from their pursuit of the Highland Conference cross country title when they race Saturday in the Pine River Invitational.

In the meantime, the Evart runners also hope to get healthy.

“A lot of the kids have had a little flu bug going around,” said coach Andy Eichelberger. “It seems like they’re taking turns being sick and what not. I’m hoping this week will be a healthy week for everybody. By not having a race (last Saturday), we were able to train harder throughout the week. We didn’t have to rest them up for a race. We ran more mileage this past week.”

There will now be at a meet every Saturday including the regionals Oct. 27 in Allendale and the state finals Nov. 3 at Michigan International Speedway near Jackson.

Logan Hammer, Max Hodges and David Zimmer continue to lead the boys attack as Evart pursues another Highland Conference title.

“The girls are looking to improve,” Eichelberger said. “The girls, it’s very close, from third to seventh, they’re all about the same, give or take a few seconds. We’re shooting for third on Tuesday.

Evart was second and Pine River fourth in the Greater Northwest Conference boys jamboree on Tuesday, Sept. 25.

Benzie was first with 41 and had the same point total as Evart but won on the tiebreaker with the highest finishing No. 6 runner. Pine River was fourth with 92.

Evart went one-two-three with Zinger, Hammer and Hodges clocking times of 16:38, 16:42 and 16:53. Trevor Holmes of Pine River was fourth in 16:53 and Greg Schaefer 10th in 17:51.

Also for the Bucks, Tony Moore was 29th in 19:15 and Kyle Nixon ran a personal best of 21:30.

Evart’s girls were fifth and Pine River sixth in the other league race.

Top times for Pine River went to Jasmine Blackrick in 24:24, Rachel Hartline in 24:26, Erica Loop in 24:28, Alyssa Geer in 25:37 and Zyporia Orange-Moored in 26:13.