By Dean Backes
Emporia's Michaela Reynolds was in perfect position to earn her first win in her final try last Saturday at Lawrence's Rim Rock Farm Classic cross country meet. Only trouble is, her nearest competitor was Blue Valley Northwest's Laura Roxberg, who would not be denied in her final quest of conquering the Gold Division Rim Rock competition.
Roxberg came close in her first three tries, finishing second, third and third in 2004, 2005 and 2006. The Husky senior, however, wasn't about to finish her stellar high school career without winning one of the classic cross country meets in the region and nation, for that matter. The field is made up of high school cross-country programs in the Midwest.
"It's really exciting," the Husky senior told the Kansas City Star Saturday. "I had to work so hard. I don't think I've really realized what I've done yet."
Roxberg outkicked Reynolds down the stretch to finish ahead of the Emporia senior by less than two seconds. Reynold's time of 14:47.50 netted the Spartan her second top 10 finish at the Classic. In 2005, Reynolds finished sixth just three places behind Roxberg.
"I know her really well; we've raced before," Roxberg told the Star. "She did really well. I just didn't want to go out too fast. That's a mistake I've made before."
With Roxberg's help, Blue Valley Northwest finished third in the team race with 174 points. Jefferson City (Mo.) and Manhattan finished first and second with 94 and 129 points respectively.
St. Louis University High scored 77 points to win the boys gold division, which was created to feature more elite teams and runners. Austin Cookson paced the Lion's with an eighth place time of 17:04.20 on the 5K course. Emporia and Oak Park (Mo.) racked up second and third place with 141 and 170 points respectively. Wichita Bishop Carroll's Bryce Volz finished as the gold division's medalist. Phil Bascio finished second for Christian Brothers (Mo.).
Topeka-Hayden's Kristin Strecker finished first in the girls blue division (smaller school varsity), while Bishop Carroll won the team championship with 56 points. Allison Fick led Iowa City West to the team championship in the girls Crimson division (large school) with a clocking of 15:22.20.
In the boys blue division, Maranatha's Zach Zarda finished first with a time of 16:55.20, while Herculaneum (Mo.) won the team championship by a 27-90 margin over Omaha Skutt Catholic (Ne.). Branson's (Mo.) Chris Bell raced to an individual championship time of 16:46.75 in the crimson division. Jefferson City (Mo.) won the team title by a 118-161 margin over Wichita-Haysville-Campus.
Football: Top Rushing Performances
Chris Spencer rushed for 287 yards and scored six touchdowns in 20 carries for Marais des Cygnes Valley in a 58-8 win over Wakefield.Royal Valley's Alex Rupnick rushed 15 times for 283 yards and four touchdowns in a 40-7 win over Hiawatha.Adam Nelson scored five touchdowns and rushed for 270 yards on 19 carries for Blue Valley-Randolph in a 48-12 win over Bern.Lyndon's Kade Neilson rushed for 275 yards on 43 carries and scored a pair of touchdowns in a 28-20 win over West Elk.Zach Poole carried the ball 30 times and netted 259 rushing yards and five scores for Fairfield in a 48-42 loss to Pretty Prairie.Moundridge's Eric Loganbill ran the ball 24 times for 256 yards and four touchdowns in a 45-33 win over Hutchinson Trinity.Caylor Luther rushed for 253 yards and six touchdowns on 20 totes for Troy in a 47-14 win over Oskaloosa.Sublette's Adam Patterson carried the ball for 250 yards and scored four times in a 54-7 win over Syracuse.Austin Flohrschutz rushed for 247 yards and a pair of scores on 22 carries for Shawnee Heights in a 14-13 win over Emporia.Girard's Tyler Bennett ran the ball for 234 yards and four scores in a 45-27 win over Erie.Michael Carseloway carried the ball 45 times for 234 yards and four touchdowns for Udall in a 46-44 loss to Chetopa.St. John's Nathan Miller ran for 229 yards and a touchdown on 17 carries in a 26-15 win over Medicine Lodge.Dakota Foster rushed for 235 yards and four scores on 21 carries for Waverly in a 50-38 win over Madison.Rose Hill's Myles Pinick rushed 12 times for 216 yards and a pair of scores in a 34-31 overtime loss to Mulvane.Matt Chaney ran for 228 yards on 34 carries and scored a couple of touchdowns for West Franklin in a 28-12 loss to Mission Valley.Chase Counties Brian Palermo ran the ball 23 times for 215 yards and three touchdowns in a 29-28 win over Oxford.Luke Hartman carried the ball 15 times for 208 yards in a 33-32 last second loss to Fort Scott.
Top Passing Performances
Columbus' Corbin Stanley connected on 15 of 21 passes for 349 yards and four touchdowns in a 48-6 win over Parsons.Adam Vandevelde completed 14 of 27 passes for 305 yards and a pair of scores in a wild 56-48 loss to Rock Creek.Doniphan West's Travis Twombly completed 14 of 31 passes for 281 yards and a couple of scores in a 50-18 loss to Pleasant Ridge.Corey Smith completed 18 of 46 aerials for 250 yards and three touchdowns in a 38-26 loss to Caney Valley.Hutchinson Trinity's Connor Riley completed 14 of 28 passes for 247 yards and three touchdowns in a 45-33 loss to Moundridge.Loren Fields connected on 20 of 31 aerials for 239 yards and a score in a 26-21 win over Bennington.Osage City's Colton Rinzler was good on 10 of 17 passes for 234 yards and a pair of scores in a 30-8 win over Herington.Ben Malotte connected on 12 of 21 passes for 229 yards and three touchdowns in a 37-27 win over Chapman.Northern Heights' Kenneth Bronson completed 19 of 29 yards for 223 yards and a pair of touchdowns in a 29-28 overtime win over Council Grove.David Fleming connected on six of 10 aerials for 202 yards and four touchdowns in a 55-14 win over Chaparral.West Elk's C.J. Madison threw for 212 yards in a 28-20 loss to Lyndon.Mike Keese completed 13 of 19 passes for 225 yards and a score in a 23-21 loss to Shawnee Mission Northwest.
Top Receiving Performances
Columbus' Tyler Fleming caught eight passes for 285 yards and four touchdowns in a 48-6 win over Parsons.Gatlin Jacobsen latched on to nine passes for 161 yards and a score in a 56-48 loss to Rock Creek.Hutchinson Trinity's Andrew LaBenz snared six aerials for 159 yards and a pair of scores in a 45-33 loss to Moundridge.Jeff Johnson caught just two passes for Wichita Independent in a 55-14 win over Chaparral, but they went for 149 yards collectively and two touchdowns.Burlington's Chase Kewley caught six passes for 143 yards and a pair of scores in a 38-26 loss to Caney Valley.Jared Hensley caught five aerials for 131 yards and a touchdown in a 34-31 overtime loss to Mulvane.West Franklin's Collin Brady latched on to six aerials for 126 yards in a 28-12 loss to Mission Valley.Zach Lee caught five passes for 116 yards for Doniphan West in a 50-18 loss to Pleasant Ridge.St. Mary's Luke Olsen latched on to seven passes for 105 yards and a score in a 56-48 loss to Rock Creek.Brett Koop caught 119 yards in passes for West Elk in a 28-20 loss to Lyndon.Piper's Alex Jones snared four passes for 134 yards and a pair of scores in a 35-0 win over Wyandotte.Jeff Kontz caught four passes for 109 yards and a pair of touchdowns for Derby in a 42-21 loss to Goddard.Sedgwick's John Henry Hattabaugh caught five passes for 102 yards in a 26-21 win over Bennington.
Girls Gymnastics: West On Top
Lawrence all-around gymnast Mallory West finished first at one of the premier gymnastics meets in the Kansas City area last weekend. The Lion senior chalked up 36.65 points to seal the championship and build momentum going into the state championships.
The meet featured the top three gymnasts from 14 area high schools.
"I'm excited that I could go out this way," West told the Lawrence Journal World. "That I could do my best and end up winning. That's great to know that I could end my whole senior night with a win."