By Amber Hayden
FALL CREEK – The Colfax boys’ and girls’ cross country teams have been making strides in the right direction during the first few weeks of the season.
And head coach Joe Doucette looked for his teams to continue that improvement when they traveled to Fall Creek for the Knudtson Invitational September 8.
“The boys and girls have worked hard and I think they will improve a lot,” stated Doucette. “Our main goal right now is to improve, have everyone dig in and work hard to improve.”
The Lady Vikings found themselves finishing fifth out of eight full teams that competed Saturday in the Knudtson Fall Creek Invitational. Colfax compiled a 123 points in the girls’ race.
Dunn-St. Croix foe Durand placed third with 87 points just two points behind runner-up Rice Lake. But the pair finished well behind girls’ champion Tomahawk, who tallied just 42 points as its top five runners finished 12th or better.
Flambeau sisters Rachel (20:24.5) and Kristen Lawton (21:12.2) finished one and two in the individuals standings.
Colfax senior Erica Kallstrom captured the team’s top individual spot and another medal with a ninth place finish in a time of 22:26.9.
“She is solid right now, but she knows what she has to do to keep improving,” Doucette explained.
Freshman Jasmine Best and senior Hailey Prince crossed next for the Colfax team with times of 23:27.5 and 25:02.2 for 19th and 33rd place respectively.
Hot on the heels of Prince was veteran runner Juelia Berger. The junior finished twenty seconds later with a time of 25:20.6 for 37th place.
Freshmen Jillian Bowe and Emilee Burcham-Scofield came in 41st and 48th with respective times of 25:46.0 and 27:07.7.
Following her freshmen classmates Jenna Goodell crossed the finish for the Vikings in 55th place and with a time of 29:57.0.
“Jasmine Best has a ton of potential and Hailey Prince and Julia Berger had their best races,” Doucette said.
But the veteran coach knows his ladies have to keep improving with each race to be in the mix for the conference meet.
“The Dunn-St. Croix is loaded with good girls’ teams and we would have to improve tremendously to even get close,” stated coach Doucette. “I think we will improve a lot. Our main goal right now is to work hard and improve.”
The Colfax boys also took a step in the right direction albeit a small one according to Doucette.
The Viking boys top four runners had solid performances Saturday in Fall Creek, where they were faster than they were last year, noted Doucette.
Running better in the last stretch of the competition, Colfax tallied 173 points in the boys’ race to place seventh out of twelve complete teams. Doucette said the squad was missing a couple of guys that would have helped reduce the team’s score.
Again, Tomahawk won the team title with 54 points with two top seven finishes and six runners in the first 19 places. Dunn-St. Croix defending champion Durand placed second with 67 points and Boyceville came in fifth with a 158.
Senior Cole Michaelson of Bloomer won the boys’ race in 16:42.6, beating runner-up Isaac Wenger of Durand by eight seconds.
Two-time all-conference senior runner Luke Heidorn finished 20th with a time of 19:37.6 to lead Colfax.
“We feel he (Luke) is really close to putting it all together,” said coach Doucette.
Finishing just a spot behind his brother was sophomore Noah Heidorn with a time of 19:41.2 for 21st place.
Junior Sawyer Best came across the line in 35th place after a run of 20:36.7.
Senior Trevor Rothbauer and freshman Luke Blanchard crossed with two minutes separating the pair in time, Rothbauer finished in 38th with a time of 20:46.8 and Blanchard had a time of 22:59.2 for 59th place.
Rounding out the boys’ runners for Colfax was Tristan Lenz, who finished in 71st place with a time of 24:29.9.
Another highlight, according to coach Doucette, eighth grader Molly Heidorn won her third straight race for the middle school girls’ team.
“The middle school girls won the team title with 30 points and four medalists and the boys had two medalists,” said Doucette.
The Vikings trekked to UW-Barron in Rice Lake yesterday (Sept. 11) and then have more than a week off before heading to Rolling Greens Golf Course in Durand on September 20.
Boys Team Results: 1. Tomahawk 54, 2. Durand 67. 3. Bloomer 90, 4. Rice Lake 132, 5. Boyceville 158, 6. Fall Creek 168, 7.
Colfax 173, 8. Blair-Taylor 179, 9. E.C. Immanuel Lutheran 211, 10. Bruce 248, 12. Thorp 284.
Colfax Boys’ Individual Results: 20. Luke Heidorn 19:37.6, 21. Noah Heidorn 19:41.2, 35. Sawyer Best 20:36.7, 38. Trevor Rothbauer 20:46.8, 59. Luke Blanchard 22:59.2, 71. Tristan Lenz 24:29.9.
Girls Team Results: 1. Tomahawk 42, 2. Rice Lake 85, 3. Durand 87, 4. Bloomer 107, 5. Colfax 123, 6. Flambeau 125, 7. Fall Creek 145, 8. Osseo-Fairchild 173.
Colfax Girls’ Individual Results: 9. Erica Kallstrom 22:26.9, 19. Jasmine Best 23:27.5, 33. Hailey Prince 25:02.2, 37. Juelia Berger 25:20.6, 41. Jillian Bowe 25:46.0, 48. Emilee Burcham-Scofield 27:07.7, 55. Jenna Goodell 29:57.0