Both the Germantown boys and girls cross-country teams took realistic approaches to the North Shore Conference meet at Tendick Park on Oct. 15, and that kind of attitude put the Warhawks just about where they should have finished, as the boys took second to defending champion Homestead and the girls a solid third to 17-time champion Whitefish Bay.
Boys coach Harris Jones knew his team would have a hard time battling the one-two punch of Homestead's Drew Bosley and Thomas Miller.
"It's just tough trying to fight that kind of production," Jones said. "We just don't have the firepower to make that up. Still, we had good progression in the second half, and our strength in our fourth through eighth runners came through today. They ran very well, and we were really able to move up through traffic."
Girls coach Nancy Pietrowiak, who got an individual runner-up finish from sophomore Sami Stieve, said her team wasn't quite healthy enough to compete with Bay or runner-up Port Washington.
"This was our last North Shore meet (before the Warhawks move to the Greater Metro next fall)," she said, "and we did our best. The girls really worked hard, but with sinus infections, bronchitis and other issues, we're just not there yet. We're starting to get healthier, though, and a few girls were close to PRs."
Both teams will be at Lincoln Park Golf Course on Saturday, Oct. 22, for the WIAA sectional meet. The boys meet will be held at 12:05 p.m. and the girls at 1:15 p.m. The top two teams and first five individuals not on those teams will advance to the state meet in Wisconsin Rapids on Oct. 29.
The girls were 14th at state last season and the boys 12th. The boys team race will come down to Homestead, Milwaukee Rufus King, Wauwatosa East and Germantown, while the girls race will likely come down to the top three North Shore teams again.
"Our work ethic is fine," Pietrowiak said. "Can we get healthy enough in time is the question?"
The Warhawk boys scored 62 points for their runner-up spot as Homestead won with 43. Dylan Ayer earned first-team all-conference honors when he earned fifth on the 5,000-meter course in 16:44. He got scoring help from Ben Schnoor in ninth (17:02), Sean Drinan in 15th (17:16), Jake Garvey in 16th (17:18) and Evan Adair in 17th (17:18).
Also running were Westin Feltz in 28th (17:36) and Joe Biesel in 29th (17:37).
Germantown's junior varsity scored an impressive one through five slam to easily win its portion of the meet. Freshman Jimmy Koel ran away from the field to win in 17:41, while Ben Cincotta, Jacob Hefle,Thomas Tretheway and Hunter Hochmuth made up the rest of the top five.
Stieve turned in a time of 19:05 to score a runner-up spot in the girls individual race to four-time champ Camille Davre of Bay (18:45).
Her effort led Germantown to a 79-point total, as Bay won with 40 and Port Washington was second with 75.
Other scoring runners for Germantown included Alyssa Goesch in 10th (20:35), McKenna Klopfer in 11th (20:38), Jennifer Lindgren in 27th (21:31) and Molly Baus in 29th (21:42). Also running were Nicole Parmenter in 35th (22:04) and Emily Bethhauser in 39th (22:31).
Pietrowiak was very pleased for Stieve. She said there is a lot of mutual respect between Stieve and Davre. The pair even posed for a picture together after the race. Pietrowiak said Stieve is finishing the season well and should be poised for even better things next year.
Lauren Young (second), Alyssa Camden (fifth) and Hannah Schaetzel (seventh) led the Warhawk junior varsity.