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Lady Spartans top-10 at Bob Firman
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Lady Spartans top-10 at Bob Firman

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BOISE, Idaho — As per the usual.

During the Bob Firman Invitational — facing stiff competition and a packed crowd — the Lady Spartans led the way for the Spring Creek cross country program, which saw each of its seven girls either set season or personal-best times at Eagle Island State Park.

Of 28-scoring teams in the varsity girls Division I M-Z race, Spring Creek ranked 10th with 204 points.

With 204 runners in the field, only two crossed the finish line ahead of junior Kendra Lusk.

Lusk finished in third place with a season-best time of 19:19.

Junior teammate Grace Florence also ran her fastest race of the year, crossing the line in 20:37.5 for 30th place.

The season improvement carried over to junior Emma Campbell as well, finishing 74th with her season record of 21:25.7.

Four in a row.

Coming off an injury did not stop junior Emma Little from clocking her fastest time of the year, notching a top-100 finish in 22:02.2 for 99th place.

Freshman Kiely Munson did not only post her fastest time of the season, she tallied the best run of her young high school career, finishing 101st in 22:05.2.

Senior Mariah Cooper extended the trend with a personal-record time of 23:26.7 for 175th place, and the roster was capped by a PR of 23:48 for 182nd from sophomore Ceara Tanner.

Junior varsity girlsSpring Creek’s junior varsity girls ranked 15th of 19-scoring teams in the M-Z race with 469 points.

Freshman Brandi Manhire was the only athlete for the Lady Spartans’ JV to finish in the top half of the 255-girl field.

Manhire placed 103rd with a personal-record time of 24:41.8.

Juniors Stephanie Fish and Jaden Pool flirted with finishes toward the front half of the pack, Fish’s time of 26:15.8 setting a personal record for 150th place — Pool’s 153rd-place finish coming on the heels of a season-record 26:19.1.

Senior Halle Burton crossed the line in 26:51.8 for a PR in 177th.

Varsity Boys

As was the case with the girls, Spring Creek’s varsity boys found Eagle Island State Park as a time-friendly course.

The Spartans finished 22nd of 35-scoring programs of the Division I varsity boys M-Z race with 550 points.

Junior Secody Charley paced Spring Creek with a personal-best time of 17:00.3 for 37th place of 243 athletes.

He was followed by fellow junior Jess Marin’s PR of 17:49 for 116th place.

In 122nd, junior teammate Harrison Walund posted the fastest run of his career in 17:52.1.

Freshman Jake Bradford crossed in 135th with a time of 18:04.6, and junior Conner Gage went for a PR of 18:10.4 for 141st.

Rack up another personal best.

Of Spring Creek’s seven runners, the fifth PR was set in 18:50.7 for 182nd place by senior Dallin Fisher.

Freshman Liam Hamilton wrapped up his race and the Spartans’ roster in 19:16.9 for 195th.

JV Boys

Staggering consistency was the theme for Spring Creek’s JV boys team, which took 19th of 28-scoring teams with 454 points.

The massive field included 458 runners, the Spartans placing eight athletes in the front half of the crowd — another three flirting with a top-half finish.

Leading the way was senior Nathan Copen, whose PR of 18:56 was fast enough to be in the Spartans’ top-seven for the varsity team, placing 69th overall.

Junior Sam Tomera also went for a personal record, giving Spring Creek’s boys their eighth-fastest time over both teams, clocking in at 19:14.6 for 95th in the JV race.

With a 19:22.5, senior Brian Lore added another PR for 103rd — followed closely by the 19:25.1 PR from sophomore Joshua Lore in 108th place.

Freshman Ben Claridge tallied his personal-best time in 19:31.2 for 124th place, giving the Spartans five PRs in a row for the JV team.

Sophomore Dillyn Sanchez finished his run in 19:47.2 for 147th place, and a season record of 20:08.9 from junior Garret Frisbie ranked 193rd.

Spring Creek’s eighth and final athlete with a front-half race was junior Camden Mortensen, who checked in with a season-best 20:17.5 for 207th place.

With a PR of 20:39.8, sophomore Dallin Dastrup neared a front-end finish in 20:39.8 for 232nd.

Freshmen went back-to-back for the Spartans in 237th and 238th with a pair of PRs, Joel Herman crossing in 20:41.8 and Gage Kelly finishing in 20:42.6.

Up Next

Some of Spring Creek’s athletes will run Thursday in the Dani Bates Invitational, at Canyon Springs Golf Course, in Twin Falls, Idaho.

Spring Creek’s elite runners are gearing up for Saturday’s races in the Capital Cross Challenge, on the Arcade Creek XC Course, in Sacramento, California.

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Related to this story

Both the Spring Creek girls and boys cross country teams are shaping up nicely as the season heads to the backstretch, recently using the surface of Arcade Creek's course as a platform for personal records during the Capital Cross Challenge, in Sacramento, California. 

In the past-seven seasons, either Elko's or Spring Creek's boys cross country teams have claimed every state championship — the Indians winning four titles (2012-2013, 2015, 2018) and and the Spartans nabbing three crowns (2014, 2016-2017).

The past-two state championships have been split equally by exact margins, Elko most recently as the 2018 champ by a five-point margin and Spring Creek as the 2017 victor by a five-point spread.

Another race between the boys is brewing at a coffee-temperature level.

In the final regular-season runs for many varsity cross country athletes, tune-ups were made by some and other rested their bodies — small-school and junior varsity runners extending their meets — prepping for the home stretch of the year.

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