The Norse boys and girls cross country teams participated in the Westby Invitational meet on Tuesday, Sept. 5., before heading to Luther College in Decorah for a race on Saturday, Sept. 9. Westby senior Hayden Fredrickson picked up top individual honors at both meets for the Norse boys.
The Westby girls team finished third out of 15 schools with 116 girls entered in the race. The Wisconsin Dells girls team won the meet with 31 and Laura Beghin (Wis. Dells) won individually with a time of 18:49.5.
Prairie du Chien came in second with 75, followed by the Westby Red team with 81; Viroqua 86; Boscobel 169; Melrose-Mindoro 178; Cashton 186; Fennimore 252; Hillsboro 260; Westby Black 263; Altoona 285; Sparta 320; Brookwood 324; Osseo-Fairchild 361; and Kickapoo/La Farge 383.
Westby Red team finishes and race times: 8, Abbey Wedwick 20:31; 9, Julianne Call 20:38; 15, Sydney Sherry 21:34; 24, Lexi Crume 22:07; 25, Justice Franks 22:10; 28, Erinn Sebion 22:20; 33, Valeria Nussbaumer 22:44.
Grace Hebel was the top finisher for the Westby Black team with a time of 23:27, followed by Sierra Cade, Ellen Johnson, Liza Jackson, Kelsie Helgerson and Sarah Weninger The Westby JV girls finished in third place as a team.
Westby Head Coach Brian Huebner said participating teams were much larger and more competitive than previous years due to Westby’s hosting of sectionals in October.
“I have been very happy with our girls performances this season because of the consistency of top eight runners. We know day in and day out what effort and times we are going to get out of those girls performances,” Huebner said.
Fredrickson continues his impressive senior year running winning the individual title with a time of 16:30. Fredrickson beat the second place runner Ian Barry of Fennimore (17:16) by 40-plus seconds. Teammate John Lucas was back on course finishing ninth. As a team Westby finished fifth.
Brookwood won the meet with 115, followed by Wisconsin Dells 117, Sparta 121, Boscobel 123, Westby 137, Hillsboro 150, Wauzeka 160, Altoona 207, Viroqua 213, Fennimore 214, Cashton 253, New Lisbon 281, Kickapoo/La Farge 363, Osseo-Fairchild 372, Prairie du Chien 390, Royall 461.
Individually for Westby boys: 1, Hayden Fredrickson (Westby) 16:30; 9, John Lucas 18:13; 14, Kade Sherry 18:29; 56, Griffin Grass 20:10; 57, Derek Helgerson 20:11; 59: Kin Hamilton 20:16; and 82, Haakon Mathison 21:39.
Huebner said Hayden looks in prime form at this point in the season and Westby also has a competitive middle group of athletes on the boys team that he is hoping are running stronger than ever by October races.
“We are blessed this season with some very good young people who are very serious about getting better each and every day,” Huebner said.
Westby girls finished 20 pts ahead of Aquinas at Decorah, a team that finished ahead of Westby at Verona meet on Sept. 2. senior Elena Schmidt ran for the first time in almost eight months recovering from a foot injury. Westby had great consistency and was led by senior Abbey Wedwick (21:22) and teammate Julianne Call (21:30).
Hayden Fredrickson appears to be in prime form at this point in the season winning the race in a personal best time of 16:20, which was 12 seconds ahead of the second place finisher, Andrew Kephart of Decorah with 16:32.
Sydney Sherry and Elena Schmidt were announced as runners of the week due to their leadership and overcoming of obstacles that have hindered their running abilities.
Westby traveled to Marshall on Tuesday, Sept. 12; UW Parkside on Saturday, Sept. 16 and Janesville on Saturday, Sept. 23.