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Written By Ink Free News / Sports on Sunday, October 4, 2020

Warsaw’s Wini Barnett chases Northridge’s Tame Bayliss up the ladder during action at the Northern Lakes Conference Cross Country Championships. InkFreeNews photos by Mike Deak

By Mike Deak

ELKHART – It was just like recent vintage, but Warsaw was happy with the current chapter.

The Lady Tigers made some moves midway through the course and kept together just enough to hold off Northridge for the team championship at the Northern Lakes Conference meet Saturday morning at Ox Bow Park.

Warsaw top three of Wini Barnett, Ava Knight and Regan Brouwer went three (19:43), four (19:44) and six (19:46) and a minute later had the cavalry arrive with Adree Beckham and Elizabeth Vander Bie placing 12th (20:43) and 13th (20:52) to secure 38 team points.

Ridge had the race’s top runner in Haylee Hile at 19:25, a full 17 seconds faster than NorthWood’s Kaitlin Burden who came in at 19:42. The Raiders then came in fifth, seventh, 16th and 18th to accumulate 47 points to take runner-up honors.

With Warsaw’s 14-0 finish in the round robin, the Tigers take the overall title for the 2020 season.

Warsaw’s Sam Lechlitner runs with teammate Tanner Stiver and NorthWood’s Brady Hunsberger.

NorthWood had Burden lead again, then saw Reese Barhydt come in next at 22:02 as part of a pack that included Emilie Allen (22:09), Jenna Markham (22:28) and Sydney Prenkert (22:31). The Panthers were fourth at 119, trailing Mishawaka’s 88 points.

Wawasee was eighth, behind Plymouth by 17 points but missing its top two to contact tracing. Lily Tyler led the Warriors with a 22:08, followed by Ella Beezley (22:27), Jordan Gibbs (22:59), Alyssa Smith (24:50) and Autumn Turner (24:57).

The boys side saw Goshen also clean sweep the conference with a tour de force. After going 14-0 in the round robin, the RedHawks scored 33 points with a hold of the top three places in the race, besting Warsaw by 21 points and Northridge by 44 points.

Drew Hogan, Cole Johnston and Tommy Claxton all came down the final hill together, as they were the entire race. Hogan won at 16:04 with Johnston a second back. Claxton came in six seconds later.

Warsaw’s Jacob Kissling ran on the tail end of the front group, falling back to seventh overall at 16:36 after the 5K spin, but the Tigers stayed together for the most part. Sam Lechlitner posted a 16:44 for ninth, with Harrison Phipps on his hip at 16:45 and Tanner Stiver steps back at 16:50. Luke Nier’s 17:07 for 16th made Goshen work for its title.

NorthWood was fourth at 120, besting Concord by three points. Brady Hunsberger again led the Panthers with a time of 16:57 for 14th overall. Coming in for Wood were Grady Stevenson (17:22), Jordan Burden (17:29), Owen Miller (17:32) and Eric Hochstetler (17:33).

Wawasee struggled to pull its back half up with the front, taking 200 points to trail Mishawaka by 29. Karlson Hand ran a 17:04 to lead the boys from Syracuse, followed by Camden Powell (17:32), Senate Shaw (18:54), Josiah Boyer (19:13) and Ian Kaase (19:37).

Posted In: Boy's Sports > Cross Country