Chesterton Tribune

 

 

Ranta and White go 1 and 2 at Skorupa girls cross country invitational

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By JIM PETERS

Just a year ago, Catherine White’s name was pretty far down the list on Chesterton’s girls cross country roster.

It doesn’t take nearly as long to find the Trojan junior anymore.

A productive spring and summer have vaulted White from the reserve ranks to the No. 2 spot on one of the area’s top teams.

“During the whole quarantine, I guess I had a lot of time on my hands, so I put the time into my running,” White said after finishing second to teammate Bailey Ranta in Saturday’s Rudy Skorupa Invitational at Lake Central. “There wasn’t really much else to do. The more time I invested in it, I was seeing results, and I wanted to do better. My sister (Rebecca, a 2018 Chesterton graduate) was on varsity, we’re competitive, so we always want to try to get ahead of each other. It made me really want to get on varsity.”

It’s been a rapid rise for White, the Trojans’ 15th runner last season. She didn’t do cross country until high school and was a sprinter/high jumper in middle school track.

“I was right on the bubble for varsity last year, so this year, I’ve got to do it,” White said. “The coaches are wonderful. I love them and the team so much. Everyone is so supportive. They had a plan for us. We just have to trust the plan and follow it. It’s been a lot of fun, to see what I can do, and just the fact we get to have a season. I’m just kind of doing my thing. If I start to feel nervous, I just tell myself, it’s just a race, it’s not life or death.”

Coach Lindsay Moskalick noticed White during the winter, though she didn’t have the chance to see the results as COVID-19 wiped out track.

“She was really starting to come on, so we were bummed we didn’t have a season,” Moskalick said. “She was hungry, she had been training hard. When we went on our COVID break, she continued to train and followed the training when we started in May. After her sophomore year, she just decided she wanted to be good. She really just emerged as a really solid No. 2 with each race, She’s going to get more confidence in herself. She’s so driven, it’s going to be fun to watch what she does this season. She definitely has some talent and the work ethic.”

Her improvement is also a lift to Ranta, the Trojans front-runner who hit the line in 19:04. White was a tick under 20 minutes with another junior, Bree Gentry, fifth.

“I really like that she’s with me now,” Ranta said of White. “Catherine’s been working hard this summer. She’s a good No. 2 for us. God forbid anything happens to me, I have a good backup. She’s been a good leader as well, helping out the team a lot. I was asking her, what made you want to step it up? She said, I just want to work myself harder. She maybe wants to run in college, too.”

Ranta, running a cross country race at L.C. for the first time, had no trouble navigating the layout.

“It was just the one hill on the back, it wasn’t anything I couldn’t adapt to,” she said. “I knew it was going to be flat. You just open your stride more. I just tried to follow coach’s plan, do what she had me do. She had me break away at a certain point.”

Despite Chesterton’s one-two-five finish, the host Indians edged the Trojans 41-43 for the title, a bump for L.C. given the absence of No. 2 runner Taylor Kosiek.

“We had a lot of talks after last week, what we need to do, what we need to improve on,” Indians coach Morgan Kleinaman said. “We also talked about stepping up to make up for (Kosiek). Like the first weekend, we had to go out and show who we are. The home course was obviously a big pride thing. I was so pleased with all of them without having Taylor.”

Natalie Kransky paced L.C. in third, just behind White. Rachel Narjes was sixth and Abigail Martisek ninth, freshman Addison Roth 11th and Carly Davis 12th.

“They have been so interchangeable,” Kleinaman said. “Coming into the season, we assumed (Kransky) would be No. 1 since she was No. 2 most of last season. We told her, you’ve got to go out and show you’re that No. 1 runner, be competitive with the other No. 1s from other schools. She hung with them. We’ve always had such a good pack, we’ve always wanted that top runner to get those low points and the pack keeps close distance to them. Just go out and compete. That was some of our downfall last week. We didn’t compete. The DAC schools have a healthy competition. We knew going into the season how close it was going to be. Normally, we don’t see Chesterton until Lowell. It’s nice to see them early.”

Despite the narrow loss, Moskalick was glad to be in the meet since Chesterton was originally scheduled to be off.

“It was going to be a non-race weekend,” she said. “With meets, we don’t know what’s going to be canceled. We wanted to get a race. We had no seniors. Everyone in the race was junior, sophomore, freshman. The top three (Ranta, White and Gentry) are all juniors. With their experience, they’re going to be a force to reckon with for 1-2-3 punch.

L.C. made up its ground on Chesterton’s four and five, which were 14th and 21st, respectively.

“Ciara (Bonner) and Alyssa (Dunlap) are brand new,” Moskalick said. “Each race, they’re going to get better and better. I think they learned, OK, we need to get out a little more aggressively. They’re going to learn how important each race, how important each person is. Even six, seven, they are as important as everyone else. They can help all of our scores.”

McKenna Handley (30th) and Addison Leady (34th) completed the Trojans’ top seven.

Luke Skorupa Invite

AT LAKE CENTRAL

Team Results

1. Lake Central, 41; 2. Chesterton, 43; 3. Valparaiso, 88; 4. Crown Point, 100; 5. LaPorte, 117; 6. Portage, 157; 7. Munster, 222; 8. Highland, 223; 9. Illiana Christian, 235.

Individual Results

1. Bailey Ranta ©, 19:04.0; 2. Catherine White ©, 19:59;0; 3. Natalie Kransky (LC), 19:59.0; 4. Brenna Sobecki (LP), 20:11.0; 5. Bree Gentry ©, 20:18.0; 6. Rachel Narjes (LC), 20:18.0; 7. Jaelyn Burgos (CP), 20:20.0; 8. Ariana Steele (LP), 20:22.0; 9. Abigail Martisek (LC), 20:24.0; 10. Cheyanne Stock (V), 20:30.0.

Other Chesterton finishers: 14. Ciara Bonner, 20:45.0; 21. Alyssa Dunlap, 21:07.0; 30. McKenna Handley, 21:33.0; 34. Addison Leady, 21:42.0; 42. Madison Trumbo, 22:07.0; 43. Alex Reed, 22:22.0; 55. Emma Brown, 23:12.0.

Junior Varsity

Team Results

1. Chesterton, 28; 2. Crown Point, 56; 3. Lake Central, 64; 4. Valparaiso, 105; 5. LaPorte, 124; 6. Munster, 187; 7. Portage, 195.

Individual Results

1. Marie Weber (LC),22:06.0; 2. Amanda Spanier (LC), 22:19.0; 3. Ali Sierazy ©, 22:30.0; 4. Nalani Malackowski ©, 22:33.0; 5. Nora Filler (IC), 22:36.0.

Other Chesterton finishers: 6. Bella Smith, 22:37.0; 8. Grace Carpenter, 22:55.0; 10. Liz Hibshman, 23:07.0; 14. Sydney Szabo, 23:18.0; 25. Abri Rodriguez, 23:52.0; 26. Coryn Rodriguez, 23:57.0; 29. Olivia Kozak, 24:04.0; 31. Maddie Burns, 24:14.0; 34. Rachel Cohen, 24:27.0; 44. Justyne Phillips, 24:50.0; 70. Sophie Arthur, 26:39.0; 71. Jordan Huneryager, 26:48.0; 77. Chloe Wisniewski, 27:10.0; 79. Madison Wunderlin, 27:19.0.

 

 

Posted 8/31/2020

 
 
 
 

 

 

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