Wirth fourth at Pine River cross country meet

LEROY — Runners survived a wet course from weekend rains and competed in Saturday’s Pine River Cecil Burch Invitational with Manton winning both boys and girls races.

Pine River was second for the girls and sixth for the boys. Reed City had three runners in each race and Brandon Wirth was fourth for the boys.

Wirth had a time of 18:44.38.

“I thought it went well,” the Reed City sophomore said. “The course was a little sloppy.  I feel my advantage is on the hills and I try to take advantage of it. With the rain and everything, it was soft and hard to get a grip.”

Also for Reed City, Noah Blythe was 25th (20:28) and Heaven Hurley 30th (22:65).

Manton had 35 points as a team and Pine River 142.

For the Bucks, Mark Geer was 18th (20:07.79), Sam Pentces 33rd (22:48), Wade Fullerton 41st (24:58.2), Kane Darrow 44th (25:14.9), Austin LaFrance 46th (26:57.54) and Maverick Holmes 49th (29.47.5).

Catherine Kettner led Reed City’s girls in 18th (25:25), while McKenzie Vandawater was 20th (25:38) and Hana Ondrus 35th (30:51).

“Heaven Hurley had a PR and this is only Hannah’s second race of the season so we were very proud of her,” Reed City coach Susan Saladin said. “The other four medaled.”

Manton had 40 points and Pine River 70 in the girls races.

Olivia Thompson was third (23:01), Anselma Barnett sixth (23:19), Anna Lindquist 10th (23:58), Kelsi Charles 12th (22;59), Holly Bailor 15th (24:37), Grace Beebe 23rd (27:34) and Jordan Dery 24th (27:51).

“I was so proud of my girls,” Pine River coach Andi Bogart said. “I wasn’t sure how it would come through. They pushed hard despite the weather. I was pleased with their second-place finish.”

The boys team only had two runners as of two weeks ago, but now has a full squad.

“For the boys, cross country is not their main sport,” Bogart said. “They’re coming out to get in shape for other sports. It’s good camaraderie. It’s definitely a good thing as we head for some rebuilding years on the cross country side. There’s some good middle school boys coming up in a couple of years. That’s also very exciting.”

Reed City is at Newaygo on Tuesday.