PLAINFIELD — Of the 18 boys’ and 15 girls’ cross country teams that participated in the Plainfield Invite Saturday at Swinford Park, the Avon Orioles rose to the top of the ranks. Both Avon squads took first in the hokum karem style event.
Among the six county squads in attendance, unranked Avon ran to victory and bested second-place Cathedral, ranked seventh, by seven points.
“We ran about as well as we could’ve right now,” Avon coach Zach Toothman said. “The course was a bit different and faster. The guys are pretty pumped about their times. We ran really well.”
First-year runner Taylor Kleyn and Presley Martin took second (29:21.32) in the overall tandem competition. Kleyn also plays soccer in the fall for the Orioles and has impressed Toothman in the early season.
Avon’s Jon Cramer and Will Anderson finished seventh (29:50.28) and Alec Scheerer and Matt Everling took 11th (30:18.15), giving the Orioles 20 points.
“Anderson and Kleyn really came out of their shells today,” Toothman said. “Will had a personal record in the mile. Kleyn has played two soccer games this week already.”
Brownsburg finished seventh overall and were led by Hari Sathyamurthy and Mark Bond. The pair placed 10th (30:12.37).
Justin Pelkey and Joel Thompson took 19th overall (30:56.75) and led Plainfield to a 13th place finish.
Danville’s duo of Brandon Siller and Daniel Gerber placed 26th in a time of 31:40.17. The Warriors finished 12th.
Mac White and Bryce Kinney led Cascade to a 15th place finish with their effort of 33:17.44, good enough for 46th.
Tri-West’s Chris Wright and Matt Knights placed 66th (36:04.91) to lead the Bruins.
No. 9-ranked Avon ran very well and bested No. 7 Westfield by an impressive 13-point margin to take the win.
Avon coach Brad Rosebrock lauded praise on his team’s efforts afterwards.
“The overall effort was incredible and matched or even exceeded my expectations,” Rosebrock said. “This is a good start and I’m really pleased.”
Malyka Abramson and Courtney Kerr repeated as champions of the event with a time of 33:44.16. Kelsie Mothersead and Taylor Nicholson finished an impressive third (34:53.04) and Kate Bernicke and Lauren Heeger took seventh (35:50.54), giving Avon 11 points.
“This was a great way to start the (year) off and it really set the tone for the season,” Rosebrock said.
Plainfield’s pairing of Samantha Woodford and Sydney Simpson took sixth (35:16.27) and helped the Quakers to fourth place.
Julia Popenfoose and Cassidy Brown led the Bulldogs to a ninth-place finish. The duo placed 14th overall in a time of 36:49.32.
Tri-West’s pairing of Carrie Chappell and Molly Henley finished 23rd (37:53.84).
Hadley Whicker and Tarah Thornburg led Cascade, finishing 50th (42:28.80)
Danville’s Molly Clark and Abigail Pitman took 64th with a time of 43:54.95.