OTTAWA — Last week on its home course, the Defiance girls cross country team finished a disappointing fourth. And during the week following that race, it appeared that Defiance’s chances of qualifying for regionals was not very promising. Two girls became injured, leaving Defiance with just five runners to compete at the district meet.

Still, Defiance ran a lot better at the Ottawa District meet on Saturday, placing third and qualifying for regionals.

Lima Shawnee won the race with 55 points. Wauseon placed second with 77 points, just eight points ahead of Defiance’s 85 points. Van Wert was the fourth and final qualifying team, finishing five points behind Defiance.

Shay Soukup had a good race for the Lady Bulldogs, finishing third, while Abby Horvath was sixth and Mira Horvath placed 13th. Also for Defiance, Emily Wahl finished 30th and Kameron Burkhart was 33rd.

“We only had five runners today and the girls knew that and they came through, no one ran a bad race,” said Defiance girls coach Scott Saner. “And I don’t know where Shay was the last three weeks. But today, this was the Shay that I have known the last three years. She ran really well today.”

Wauseon’s top runner was freshman Grace Rhoades (19:37.7), who finished one second ahead of Soukup. Competing in her biggest meet of the season didn’t seem to bother her.

“I was excited to run,” Rhoades said. “I just worked on running the pace I had set up for each mile today and it worked out well for me.”

After Rhoades for Wauseon, Serena Mathews placed eight, Natasha Miller finished 10th, Alona Mahnke placed 23rd and Bailey McGuire was 34th.

“I thought they ran really well,” said Wauseon coach Joe Allen. “Grace ran a phenomenal race, our second and third girls placed well and our fourth and fifth runners ran really well. The last two really went after it the last half mile, to get us in position.”

The top 16 locals qualifying as individuals were Bryan’s Audrey Zimmerman (ninth) and Napoleon’s Macee Dilbone (16th). Bryan’s Addie Oberlin placed 17th, to miss qualifying by one place.

The Defiance boys put all top five runners within the first 17 runners to easily defeat runner up Ottawa-Glandorf, 35-96. Wauseon also qualified, finishing third.

Defiance’s Mhalicki Bronson won the race in 15:43.7.

“I didn’t want to run the race too hard, because the course has a lot of twists and turns,” Bronson said. “So, this was more a course for strategy. Overall, our guys ran really well today.”

Bronson’s teammate Brennen Roehrig placed second in 16:20, just ahead of Lima Shawnee’s Isaiah Johns (16:22.5).

“I was in fourth place after two miles and then Johns made a move faster than I expected, but I decided to stay with him,” Roehrig said. “Then, the last quarter mile, I gave it all I had.”

Defiance’s Colin Moats was seventh, Cooper Morton eighth and Eli Fortman placed 17th.

“The guys ran a good race, but made some mistakes in the pack up in the front,” said Defiance boys coach Obie Mouser. “A couple of our guys got jammed up and they had to push it to get back up there and burned a ton of energy to do that. But the nice thing was that they adapted.”

Ottawa-Glandorf’s top five were Kamron Maag (11th), Parker Schomaeker (18th), Hunter Stechschulte (19th), Max Buddelmeyer (20th) and Ty Buckland (28th).

Third place Wauseon’s top five runners were Braden Vernot (ninth), Jack Callan (14th), Hunter Wasnich (15th), Aidan Pena (26th) and Carter Nofziger (43rd).

“I’m super excited to get the guys out,” said Wauseon coach Joe Allen. “We knew that if we stayed close to Ottawa, we would get out. We would have had three individual qualifiers, so it was nice to see them pack up towards the front.”

The girls Division III race turned out to be a three-way individual race and it was won by Archbold’s Kylie Sauder and the Archbold team. Sauder took first by one second over Holgate’s Raena Willett, 19:12.3-19:13.9. Ayersville’s Teryn Bour placed third, in 19:21.

“We were step for step the first two miles and then I made my final move in the final 100 meters,” Sauder said. “It feels good to win.”

Willett, who had won two close races over Sauder this year, was not disappointed in her race. Her time equaled a personal best and was her best time on the Ottawa Park course.

Archbold, with 65 points, topped Crestview’s 95 points. Of the other qualifying teams, Pettisville (115) was third, Edgerton (125) fourth and Lincolnview, fifth.

After Sauder, Sophie Rupp placed fourth, Karley Ramirez was 17th, Brittney Ramirez 19th and Annika DeLong finished 24th.

“The girls had to run their type of race to do well today and they did,” said Archbold coach Rachel Kinsman. “Now it’s Tiffin (for regionals) and we always look forward to it. We want to make sure everyone’s healthy and we will have to be at the top of our game to qualify.”

Pettisville’s top runners were Kate Stuber in fifth, Sarah Foor in 17th and Kelly Miller in 21st.

“Qualifying for regionals was a goal and we live to fight another week,” said Pettisville coach Gabe Jaramillo. “Kate ran fantastic today and as a whole, the team ran really well.”

Edgerton’s best performances came from Stefanie Thiel (ninth), Kenzie Purk (18th) and Ashlee Hug (24th).

Besides Willett and Bour, also qualifying individually were Holgate’s Elisabeth Willett (eighth), Fairview’s Taylor King (10th), Stryker’s Trinitie Woolace (11th), Wayne Trace’s Kassidy Campbell (12th), Antwerp’s Aeriel Snyder (13th), Leipsic’s Whitney Langhals (15th) and Fairview’s Leah Layman (17th).

In the Division III boys race, Ayersville’s Noah Fisher took home the individual title in 15:45. He didn’t stick around long at the finish line, though. He went out to cheer on his teammates at various positions on the course. Apparently, the strategy paid off. Ayersville placed sixth, as the final team to made it to regionals.

“I haven’t run a fast time in awhile, but I hit all my mile splits today,” Fisher said. “It was a great day overall, with the team qualifying as well.”

Holgate won the meet with 54 points, Tinora placed second (74), Fairview was third (82), Lincolnview was fourth, Edgerton (159) placed fifth and Ayersville finished sixth (165). Five of the six qualifying teams were from the GMC.

For Holgate, Addison Casillas was sixth, Jack Westrick eighth, Hayden Hartman placed 11th, Bailey Sonnenberg finsihed 12th and Avery Casillas was 17th.

“These guys wanted to win and I’m very excited for them,” said Holgate coach Brad Hurst. “They run in a pack and run together so hard and they are interchangeable. Today, our number three runner was our top runner.”

For third-place Tinora, Clay Carpenter was fifth, Chris Ferguson placed ninth, Jacob Cramer finished 10th, Lance Rinkel was 22nd and Jaxen Durfey placed 28th.

“We ran pretty well and it’s nice to see five GMC schools qualify for regionals,” said Tinora coach Jim Winseman. “We had four guys finish in the top 24 and our fifth guy finished just outside of that. Hopefully, we can put it together again next week at regionals.”

Fairview’s top runners were Treyvon Hasting, second, Nick Breininger, fourth and Ethan Underwood was seventh. Edgerton’s top guys were Josh Apt, 13th and Hunter Burke, 19th. Ayersville’s James Zimmerman was 15th.

Individual qualifiers for regionals were Stryker’s Emanuel Villanueva (third), Fayette’s Quinn Mitchell (fourth), North Central’s Quin Burt (20th) and Hilltop’s Tucker Beres (23rd).

Division II Districts

At Ottawa Park

Boys (Team regional qualifiers bold)

Defiance 35, Ottawa-Glandorf 96, Wauseon 107, Lima Shawnee 117, Otsego 143, Maumee 169, St. Marys 171, Van Wert 192, Bryan 221, Napoleon 270, Elida 277, Kenton 304, Paulding 333, Lima Bath 339

Individual Top 10

Mhalicki Bronson (D), 15:43.4; Brennen Roehrig (D), Isaiah Johns (LS), Ashton Serrato (O), Hunter Sherer (VW), Joshuah Taylor (B), Colin Moats (D), Cooper Morton (D), Braden Vernot (W), Daniel Gaffney (N).

Area Individual Regional Qualifiers

Joshuah Taylor (B), Daniel Gaffney (N), Ryan Otto (N)

Girls (Team regional qualifiers bold)

Lima Shawnee 55, Wauseon 77, Defiance 85, Van Wert 90, St. Marys 113, Napoleon 146, Kenton 156, Ottawa-Glandorf 248, Bryan 255, Lima Bath 264, Maumee 281, Otsego 333, Paulding 386

Individual Top 10

Caylee Phillips (VW), 18:50.2; Grace Rhoades (W), Shay Soukup (D), Celia Spieles (LS), Alaina Williams (LS), Abby Horvath (D), Kierra Krohmer (K), Serena Mathews (W), Audrey Zimmerman (B), Natasha Miller (W)

Area Individual Regional Qualifiers

Kierra Krohmer (K), Audrey Zimmerman (B), Maria Jutte (SM), Ellen Schloemer (SM), Macee Dilbone (B).

Division III Districts

At Ottawa Park

Boys (Team regional qualifiers bold)

Holgate 54, Tinora 74, Fairview 82, Lincolnview 98, Edgerton 159, Ayersville 165, Crestview 189, Archbold 231, Antwerp 248, Hilltop 249, Fayette 255, Montpelier 279, Leipsic 303, Wayne Trace 409, Hicksville 413, Edon 475

Individual Top 10

Noah Fisher (Ay), 15:46.4; Treyvon Hastings (FV), Emanuel Villanueva (Stryker), Quinn Mitchell (Fay), Nick Breininger (FV), Clay Carpenter (T), Addison Casillas (Hol), Ethan Underwood (FV), Jack Westrick (Hol), Christopher Ferguson (T).

Area Individual Regional Qualifiers

Emanuel Villanueva (Stryker), Quinn Mitchell (Fay), Quin Burt (North Central), Tucker Beres (Hill).

Girls (Team regional qualifiers bold)

Archbold 65, Crestview 95, Pettisville 115, Edgerton 125, Lincolnview 164, Fairview 166, Antwerp 191, Ayersville 216, Holgate 220, Montpelier 234, Leipsic 240, Fayette 258, Tinora 318, Hilltop 402

Individual Top 10

Kylie Sauder (Arch), 19:12.3; Raena Willett (Hol), Teryn Bower (Ay), Sophie Rupp (Arch), Kate Stuber (P), Ragen Harting (C), Madison Langdon (Lin), Elisabeth Willett (Hol), Stefanie Thiel (Edg), Taylor King (FV).

Area Individual Regional Qualifiers

Teryn Bour (Ay), Raena Willett (Hol), Elisabeth Willett (Hol), Taylor King (FV), Trinitie Woolace (Stryker), Kassidy Campbell (WT), Aeriel Snyder (Ant), Whitney Langhals (Leipsic), Leah Layman (FV).

At Findlay Owens CC

Boys (Team regional qualifiers bold)

Hopewell-Loudon 46, Liberty Center 90, Maumee Valley Country Day 92, New Riegel 94, Woodmore 108, Ottawa Hills 157, Van Buren 218, Toledo Christian 245, Gibsonburg 260, Patrick Henry 285, Evergreen 303, Carey 305, North Baltimore 346, Oregon Cardinal Stritch 393, McComb 399, Northwood NTS, Delta NTS, Emmanuel Christian NTS

Individual Top 10

Jordan Foster (HL), 16:41.04; Patrick Lyell (MVCD), Keefer McCluer (OH), Carter Ritchey (HL), Paul Koenig (W), Brandon Gillig (NR), Caleb Correia (TC), Nathaniel Elieff (LC), C.J. Buchanen (W), Elliott Ramsey (EC).

Area Individual Regional Qualifiers

Nickolas Sherick (D).

Girls (Team regional qualifiers bold)

Liberty Center 42, Woodmore 97, Carey 122, Hopewell-Loudon 124, Genoa 126, Van Buren 132, Gibsonburg 163, Ottawa Hills 213, Patrick Henry 218, Evergreen 233, North Baltimore 267, New Riegel 343, Elmwood 345, Toledo Christian 369, Swanton NTS, Delta NTS, Maumee Valley Country Day NTS, Emmanuel Christian NTS

Individual Top 10

Hope Oelkrug (LC), 18:59.37; Sarah Reinhart (C), Sydney Miller (LC), Ava Beam (W), Olivia Vogelpohl (W), Olivia Thatcher (W), Emily Porter (MVCD), Justine Hunt (VB), Emelia Simmons (G), Alivia Roerdink (HL).

At Columbus Grove

District 1 Boys (Team regional qualifiers bold)

Columbus Grove 23, Waynesfield-Goshen 106, Bluffton 107, Kalida 112, Ottoville 112, Upper Scioto Valley 123, Fort Recovery 153, Riverdale 187, New Knoxville 219, Cory-Rawson 265, Delphos St. John’s NTS

Individual Top 10

Carson Closson (CG), 16:37.6; Caleb Stechschulte (CG), Breece Pingle (CG), Trent Koch (CG), Nolan German (O), Joe Parker (USV), Ryan Lucke (K), Zack Britton (USV), Eli Webber (R), Will Zeller (K).

Area Individual Regional Qualifiers

Nolan German (O), Ryan Lucke (K), Will Zeller (K), Kyle Looser (O).

District 1 Girls (Team regional qualifiers bold)

Columbus Grove 24, St. Henry 52, Fort Recovery 83, Marion Local 101, Parkway 132, Spencerville 134, Kalida NTS, Lima Central Catholic NTS, Ottoville NTS, Riverdale NTS

Individual Top 10

Alyssa Ellerbrock (CG), 18:49.4; Erin Downing (CG), Kelsey Broering (ML), Leanndra Price (CG), Lillee Stewart (S), Juleigha Collier (R), Leah Heitkamp (SH), Paige Hoersten (O), Katie Kunkler (SH), Ellie Keehn (CG).

Area Individual Regional Qualifiers

Paige Hoersten (O).

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