Scottie XC Nation has come to expect running excellence, and Week 1 of the 2014 season at the Poplar Invitational last Saturday showed that more could be in store.
The four-time defending state champion GHS girls finished where you would expect. First.
The boys also impressed. Although final team results weren't yet available Tuesday, Scottie cross country coach Rod Karst told The Courier that his boys well might have finished second to the strong Culbertson crew.
In individual competition, Glasgow senior Amanda Wolff was best. She outpaced the entire girls field in 20:30 at the Medicine Bear Complex.
That was a whopping 2:02 faster than Wolff's time on the same course in 2013 – but there was good reason why she and so many Scottie boys and girls clocked about 2 to 5 minutes more quickly this year: The course was shorted about two-tenths of a mile to an even 3 miles.
But if you're looking for the biggest time cutter at this invite, look at junior Chase Hughes on the boys side. He ran in 20:24 compared to 25:55 in 2013 – impressive, but still with room to improve. Hughes ranked 22nd overall and sixth among the boys from 1 Scottie Pride Drive.
Among the girls, the situation was similar. Senior Kerry Hoffman slashed her time the most from 27:28 to 23:45, finishing 12th overall and fourth on the state champs.
“The kids did alright for their first meet,” Karst said. “It was a good meet for us to personally see where we're at. We're seeing where people fit in our top seven or eight.”
Here's where they're at right now. Following are Glasgow's overall individual rankings and times at Medicine Bear.
Walker Allen (9) 18:36, Ethan Jamba (13) 18:49, Gabe Hallock, (14) 19:00, Kasey Seyfert (20) 19:40, Braden Meland, (21) 20:10, Chase Hughes (22) 20:24, Logan Gunderson (27) 22:33,
Tanner Overby (30) 22:52, Tony Kaiser (33) 24:27.
Amanda Wolff (1) 20:30, Alex Simensen (6) 22:47, Brinlie Nielsen (11) 23:40, Kerry Hoffman (12) 23:45, Mary Fewer (16) 24:14, Faith Sallee (18) 24:49, Morgan Guttenberg (31) 27:35, Andrea Hansen (33) 33:00.
The Glendive meet on Tuesday this week was canceled. Next up for Glasgow XC is Friday's meet at Riverfront Park in Billings, an annual opportunity to see how the Scotties compare with larger schools in Montana and Wyoming.
The big date on the GHS regular season calendar is Sept. 27 at Fort Peck, the Glasgow Invitational.