Libby

Libby Invitational
2006
Results

--BOYS--
4.   Ian Mallams.............16:04	
18. Jacob Fern...............18:07	
20. Joseph Alexander.........18:07	
21. Blake Bjornson...........18:08	
35. Pat McGunagle............19:01	
37. Nick Donovan.............19:10	

Team Scores:
1. Flathead..................22
2. Sandpoint.................92
3. Whitefish.................98
4. Polson....................124
5. Col Falls.................129
6. Thompson Falls............136
7. Ronan.....................198
8. Libby.....................214
9. Bonners Ferry.............256
     Plains..................no score
     Kellogg.................no score
     Eureka..................no score

15. Wes Beougher.............19:59	
20. Joe Guerri...............20:33	
21. David Teeples............20:41	
22. Shane Hanson.............20:44	
29. Luke Knight..............21:24	
31. Dan Gibbs................21:47	
34. Jamie MacNamara..........22:14	
38. Gentry Darkenwald........23:12	
46. Chris MacNamara..........25:33	

Team Scores:
1. Flathead..................15
2. Sandpoint.................96
3. Whitefish.................107
4. Polson....................169
     Ronan...................no score
     Bigfork.................no score
     Col. Falls..............no score
     Bonners Ferry...........no score
     Kellogg.................no score
     Thompson Falls..........no score


--GIRLS--
6.  Beth Donovan.............20:04	
16. Lauren Kuennen...........21:00	
17. Clare Miller.............21:01	
25. Janna Rozar..............21:47	
26. Loni Hanson..............21:50	
41. Natalie Kearns...........23:43	


Team Results:
1. Sandpoint.................42
2. Flathead..................61
3. Ronan.....................76
4. Whitefish.................90
5. Bonners Ferry.............140
6. Polson....................147
7. Kellogg...................209
8. Col. Falls................214
9. Eureka....................242
10. Libby....................282
     Bigfork.................no score
     Thompson Falls..........no score


1.  Kelly Beiser.............22:19	
4.  Marni Hale...............24:15	
6.  Megan Shaver.............24:32	
9.  Jade Gephart.............24:52	
10. Danielle Rogers..........25:06	
18. Katie McGunagle..........26:18	
19. Hannah Weaver............26:30	
26. Mary Kohnstamm...........28:58	
27. Emily Loesch.............30:23	

Team Scores:
1. Flathead..................29
2. Whitefish.................30
    Sandpoint................no score
    Thompson Falls...........no score
    Col. Falls...............no score
    Bigfork..................no score
    Polson...................no score
    Ronan....................no score
    Bonners Ferry............no score

I felt a bit apprehensive about our season opener on Friday at the Libby Invitational. Although our teams were ready to get this first competition behind them, I couldn't help wishing I had all 53 members of the team with us. We would take 16 boys and 16 girls to the first meet. Since we have only ten weeks in our season, and I'd like to make the most of each one. The 32 members that participated did a fantastic job and represented the program and their school well.

The teams were faster than the ones that placed 4th at the same meet last season, but the field included Flathead and Ronan, who are a couple of the stronger programs in the State. Also in the field were teams from the rest of the Northern A Conference. This would give us a look at the rest of the teams that we'd like to compete with, as well as several teams from Idaho.

The Lady Bulldogs ran very well, as sophomore Beth Donovan led them to a fourth place finish. Her individual 6th place finish (20:04) really helped us out in the team score. Teammates Lauren Kuennen and Clare Miller finished in 16th (21:00) and 17th (21:01) place, respectively. The team scoring was rounded out by Janna Rozar (25th in 21:47) and freshman Loni Hanson (26th in 21:50).

Although the team placing remained the same as last year, the performance was much better. Sandpoint won the meet with a low score of 42 points. In cross country the lower the score the better the score. Each runners position is worth that many points, and the top five positions are added together to reach a team score. The traditional strong team from Flathead was second with 61 points. State Class A defender Ronan was third with 76 points, followed by Whitefish with 90 points.

We were able to come with 30 points of Flathead, and 14 of Ronan, even without the services of our number two runner, Anne Danczyk. This team is proving to be a very competitive one. The addition of Loni to our group really helps us out. You really need more than five to have a great team. You never know when one of the first five will need some help.

In addition to the strength of the Varsity, newcomer Kelly Beiser ran past all the competition in the final mile to win the junior varsity race with a very nice time of 22:19. This led the Lady Bulldog Junior Varsity to a near upset of Flathead, missing the by the slimmest of margins 29 to 30.

I think that the rest of the conference now realizes that this group of young ladies is a real threat this season. That says a lot in the Northern A, were there are a lot of great teams.

The boys team had a very nice performance as well. We had many of our boys not make the trip for various reasons. Luckily the team has so much depth that they were able to still finish 3rd in a strong field.

Ian Mallams had a great day. The senior was right with the lead pack at 1 mile mark, and kept it close throughout the race. He ran a fantastic time for the course as he finished fourth in 16:04. It was hot again this year, just like the past couple of years. He came within two seconds of catching Polson's Logan Torgison, who is a threat to win the Class A title this season. Torgison was third at last year's State meet, and he's improved quite a bit since then. To have Ian only two seconds back, and closing gives us a great indication that Ian may also have a chance at the individual state title later this fall.

The packing of the 2-3-4 runners for Whitefish is what allowed them to finish third in the team standings for the boys. Jacob Fern (18th – 18:07), Joseph Alexander (20th –18:07) and Blake Bjornson (21st-18:08) finished within a second of one another. That's just how close it's going to be with this group, this season. Patrick McGunagle (35th – 19:01) and Nick Donovan (37th- 19:10) rounded out the Whitefish finishers.

To be able to just miss second place by six points really gives us confidence. We were missing Drew Coco, our number two runner, as well as Erik Anderson, Michael Harrison, Dylan Rice, Byron Bard, Michael Samdahl and freshman standout Tanner Hosak for this first meet. All of these runners have the ability to run on the Varsity squad. This competition is only going make the whole group faster. We should have all of them for the Kalispell meet coming up this weekend, although they will be running in the Junior Varsity event in an effort to earn there spot on the top seven squad.

The Kalispell meet is a large affair with teams such as Flathead, the Missoula schools: Big Sky, Sentinel, Hellgate and Loyola. All the Northern A schools will be there as well. Also attending with be strong teams from Spokane. It will also be a chance for us to compete against Browning, a team favored to be in the thick of the team race in late October.

The Junior High races begin at 10:00 am with Whitefish runners Stella Holt and Jack Steele participating. The JV Girls race will be at 11:00 a.m. followed by the JV Boys race at 11:30 a.m. The Varsity Girls will begin at noon, and the Varsity Boys will finish the event with a 12:30 p.m. starting time.

With 49 of the 55 Whitefish runners scheduled to compete, you'll want to be there for all the races if possible. There will be plenty of opportunities to cheer on your favorite Bulldog and Lady Bulldog runners through the challenging, but spectator friendly course at the Kidsports complex located just across from the Flathead Valley Community College.