BOYCEVILLE — They say big things come in small packages.
This year’s Boyceville cross country teams are hoping that despite their limited numbers and experience that each can make a leap forward after disappointing finishes at the conference meet last season.
“We struggled at the conference meet (last year),” noted seventh-year head coach Corey Day. “But we ran well in the sectional meet at home.”
The boys took last in the 2014 D-SC meet while the girls were unable to field a team.
Day is hoping that last year’s strong finale will give his runners a boost in its new campaign.
The Bulldogs have 11 returning letterwinners from a year ago include senior Jack Kapsner; juniors Kiel Anderson, Micheal Chich, Maxwell Engel, Jerod Nelson, Sam Retz and Emma Harnisch; sophomores Rian Corr, Marissa Dormanen, Brianna Foer and Shian Wagner.
The Bulldogs did lose multiple letter winner and two-time, first-team all-conference runner Mitch Pustol to graduation. Pustol holds the seventh best time for a 5,000 meter race in the history of Boyceville Cross Country.
The girls’ team has also been without girls’ first-teamer Shiann Wagner for the first few weeks. Wagner is recovering from an injury.
Day noted that Kiel Anderson, Max Engel, Rian Corr, Jack Kapsner and Sam Retz all logged a lot of time running this past summer. And it has shown in the first few meets as Retz has led the Bulldog boys with Corr close behind.
Newcomers to the boys’ team include Mark Timper and Casey Owen.
The girls have had just the trio of Marissa Dormanen, Lauren Dominick and Sarah Kapsner competing in the first few meets but hope to add a few more throughout the season.
“The boys have been working very hard with the motivation to wipe last year’s conference finish out of their memories,” said Day. “The girls are looking to gain experience and field a team in the conference and sectional meets.”
Day believes that Colfax, who has six to seven seniors race-proven experience, is the team to beat on the boys side of the conference race while Glenwood City’s strong numbers and its state experience make the Hilltoppers a favorite to repeat in the girls’ competition.
“Our boys have a core group of juniors that I am looking to step up and run like upper classmen,” concluded Day. “The girls are young and we hope to see improvement every time they run.”
Senior: Jack Kapsner
Juniors: Kiel Anderson, Michael Chich, Maxwell Engel, Jerod Nelson, Samuel Retz 11
Sophomores: Rian Corr, Emmett Kapsner, Casey Owen
Freshman: Mark Timper
Junior: Emma Harnisch
Sophomores: Lauren Dominick, Brianna Foer, Shiann Wagner
Freshmen: Marissa Dormanen, Sarah Kapsner