Some of the area’s high school cross country teams used the first Saturday in September as a starting point for what promises to be a fun and exciting 2013 season.
Jordan-Elbridge, in fact, hosted one of the opening meets, the Kamikaze Challenge, in which 11 boys and eight girls teams ran through a shorter course (2.4 miles) that featured two climbs up “Kamikaze Hill” and nine hay bales to jump over, among other obstacles.
Better yet for the home fans, J-E won the boys edition of the meet, the Eagles picking up 58 points to easily defeat runner-up Westhill/Bishop Ludden, who was second with 98 points.
Among individuals, J-E’s Jack Gugel finished second, edged out at the line by Auburn’s Jordan Middleton, though both finished in 13 minutes, 54 seconds.
Nathan Hollis was sixth for the Eagles in 14:20. Nick Parkolap took 11th place with a clocking of 14:37, while Dylan Whittico (15:01) was 18th and Jacob Patterson got 21st place in 15:28. Tyler Jackson (15:48) and David Fixler (16:33) rounded out the J-E field.
As for Westhill/Ludden, Garnet Remillard stepped up, taking 10th place in 14:34. Alec Walsh was 16th (14:53), while Brian Celeste gained 20th place in 15:20, just ahead of teammates Luke Sekowski (15:33) and Cain Ballard (15:41).
Moving to the girls Kamikaze Challenge, J-E placed third, with 73 points, trailing Homer (42 points) and Hannibal (65 points) as Homer’s Jade Auchmoody won the individual race in a time of 16:17, with Weedsport’s Natalie Mogavo second in 17 minutes flat.
Just behind them, the Eagles’ Abby Gugel needed 17:10 to make her way to third place. Mary Elizabeth Dristle was 11th, in 18:26, edging Antonia Malvaso (18:31), who was 12th. Miranda Malvaso (19:40), Emily Kuehnle (19:42), Lauren Hubbs (20:01) and Marissa Malvaso (20:04) followed.
For Westhill/Ludden, who finished fourth with 86 points, Caroline Coates had a sixth-place individual time of 17:44, with Mary Kate Washburn ninth in 18:05. Molly Clark took 14th place (18:42) as Caroline Black (19:57) and Alex Parson (20:19) also had top-30 finishes.