Running to State


Jake Holstege

The WO Girl’s Cross Country team has had an incredible season and hopes to keep it going during the State meet this Saturday around three o’clock.  They are seeded in tenth place, but many hope that they are able to place better than their rank.  The girls are led by coaches Emily Laatz and Raeanne Hart.  The meet will take place at the Michigan International Speedway, in southeastern Michigan.  The weather on Saturday looks to be mostly sunny with a high of 62.

State Roster:

  1. Soph. Taylor Schott
  2. Jr. Emma DeNave
  3. Soph. Iris Swarthout
  4. Frosh. Abby Olson
  5. Soph. Katie Frauenheim
  6. Sr. Anna Smyk
  7. Sr. Jacinda Cole

The Good, the Bad, the Ugly:

The Good:  The team is ranked tenth in division 1 and hopes to place even better. The team is no stranger to winning at the big stages before.  When the team competed at the Grand Haven Jamboree, the girls placed first, proving they can compete in other environments.  WO beat Rockford previously in the year, but Rockford  placed ahead of WO during the jamboree.  This is good because WO is able to beat a team ahead of them.

The Bad:  The team knows that they will be unable to place first at the competition. Some of their best runners will be tested to their max.  “Our goal is to place in the top 10 in the state and possibly have some girls receive All State honors or finish in the top 30 individually,”  Laatz said. So the “bad” is not really bad at all.

The Ugly:  Laatz believes the thing that will weigh her team down the most is their inexperience.  Not only have many of their runners never been to state, but there are not as many seniors as on most other State qualifiers..

The X-Factor:  “Each player is equally important as it takes all runners to run well,” Laatz said. The other X-Factor would be how mentally focused each runner is.  If they are mentally focused, they have great chance of ranking high.