Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Raffin Reports: Madrigal blazing a trail

I follow cross country meets during the season for two reasons. First, I love the sport, and second, the announcing crew at Michigan International Speedway needs all the information on contending teams and individuals at the state finals.

This year Division III boys call for close attention because six of the top nine finishers from 2008 are returning.

A year ago at MIS in Division III, Blake Allison from Harrison was runner-up; Alex Wilson from Kent City was third; Albion's Paul Lewis was fourth; Durand's David Madrigal was sixth; Blissfield's Justin Bateson was seventh; and Whitmore Lake's Zach Carpenter was ninth.

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Monday, September 21, 2009

Raffin Reports: Linden continues its run to the top

Even Linden cross county coach Clint Lawhorne concedes his team has a lot returning this fall from a squad that easily won the boys Division 2 title last fall.

“Five of our seven state meet runners return as do four junior varsity runners who ran from 17:30 to 18:15,” said Lawhorne, who now begins his sixth season with the Eagle harriers.  “the potential is there, but last year we ran the greatest race ever run by a Linden cross country team, and some teams that were serious contenders did not run their greatest races.” 

For a young cross country coach, Lawhorne has quickly master-minded the school into a yearly Division 2 power.  The last three years the team had finished fifth, third, and first in races at the Michigan International Speedway. And with another top finish in 2009, Linden definitely looks to be the boys Division 2 team of this decade. 

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Monday, September 7, 2009

Raffin Reports: Megan Goethals

Rochester High School’s Megan Goethals begins the 2009 cross country season definitely as our state’s number one high school female distance runner. Let’s hope by season’s end in December (for those elite runners), Goethals will again rate as one of the nation’s best.

Last year as a junior, Goethals won the Michigan Division 1 cross country championship at the Michigan International Speedway in 17:10, the fastest time ever run for a female in a state final race. In addition, on the track last spring, Goethals won the 1600-meters in 4:51.2 and the 3200-meters in 10:37.50 at the Division 1 finals. Two weeks later at the Nike Outdoor Nationals ran, she covered the one mile in 4:51.53 and the two mile in 10:20.25 And last fall she won the regional Foot Locker title in Kenosha, Wisconsin, and placed third in the Foot Locker national finals in San Diego, California. That gave a lot of championship running for one girl from Michigan.

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