Chesterton Tribune



CHS girls cross country wins New Prairie Sectional

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A week after ending a 22-year Duneland Athletic Conference drought, Chesterton put an end to the same dry spell in the sectional Saturday, edging Valparaiso 57-65 at New Prairie.

“It was kind of a common theme. Coming off conference with that high, making sure we maintain that want-to, that desire to perform your best,” Trojans coach Lindsey Moskalick said. "Overall, we got the job done. Five in the top 20 was kind of what we were hoping for. We had interchanging, but that just shows a good team. Someone sees someone having an off day, they know they have to move up and close the gap to help the team as a whole."

Valparaiso's Kaylie Politza got the best of Chesterton's Bailey Ranta for the first time, hitting the line in 18 minutes, 37.6 seconds, 14 clocks in front of New Prairie's Lilly Zelasko. Ranta was third in 19:11.3.

"She's been so good to race with," Politza said of Ranta. "She's such a great competitor. She's an awesome runner. We were side by side and it was so awesome. It pushed me so much. I got so determined. I’m really excited with the way I finished because I didn't feel like I was dying. Normally, if I run a race like I did, I wouldn't be able to finish that hard. The first time (here), I pushed it up the hill too hard. I learned from that and I didn't kick it up the hill as hard. I was able to save my legs for that straightaway."

Besides Ranta, Bree Gentry took eighth (20:16.3) and Catherine White tenth (20:28.9). Alyssa Dunlap (17th, 20:42.3) and Ciara Bonner (19th, 20:48.2) rounded out the scoring

"Alyssa moved up nicely," Moskalick said. "Bree stepped up into a good No. 2 spot. Catherine bounced back from last week, like we expected her to. Kaylie just had a better race than Bailey. I think this showed Bailey, OK, I have to go in ready to race. She's going to bounce back. This will be fuel for the fire. I told the girls sometimes it's the bad races that make you want to get better. She had an off day. It happens.”

Ranta looks to shake it off in the Chesterton Regional at Sunset Hill.

“I had a phenomenal race last Saturday and I just didn't really prepare myself as well as I did last Saturday,” she said. "My body's just tired from training. I can't let this race get to me. I need it to make me work harder on my goals for the season. I have to use it as a lesson, get mad at it and hope to win at regionals.”

Also for Chesterton, Mckenna Handley was 24th (21:24.9) and Liz Hibshman 29th (21:55).

Wheeler (75), LaPorte (102) and Portage (104) also earned regional berths.

IHSAA Sectional


Team Results

1. Chesterton, 57; 2. Valparaiso, 65; 3. Wheeler, 75; 4. LaPorte, 102; 5. Portage, 104; 6. New Prairie, 144; 7. South Central, 206; 8. Boone Grove, 219; 9. Westville, 258; 10. Lake Station, 298.

Individual Results

1. Kaylie Politza (V), 18:37.6; 2. Lillian Zelasko (NP), 18:51.4; 3. Bailey Ranta ©, 19:11.3; 4. Ella Bensz (LP), 19:20.9; 5. Emma Hellewege (WH), 19:47.2.

Other Chesterton finishers: 8. Bree Gentry, 20:16.3; 10. Catherine White, 20:28.9; 17. Alyssa Dunlap, 20:42.3; 19. Ciara Bonner, 20:48.2; 24. McKenna Handley, 21:24.9; 29. Liz Hibshman, 21:55.0.


Posted 10/12/2020




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