MADISON — High school cross country teams went head-to -ead with quality competition from all over northeastern Ohio on Saturday morning at the U Wanna Come Back Invitational.
Madison High School boys cross country coach Jeremy Verdi said many teams come to the meet to prepare for the district meet to be held in several weeks at Madison High School.
Teams from big school power houses, like Mentor and Stow, came to town to get a feel for the course and prepare for the important meets to come.
"There is something special when you come in the morning...and you see hundreds of runners," he said.
Verdi said it means a lot that the school is given the opportunity to host the district meet later this month.
Edgewood's Granison Hill led all area performers with a sixth-place finish in a time of 16:43 in the boys varsity race leading his team to a seventh-place finish in the team standings. Geneva's Alex Kollhoff was close behind in ninth place with a time of 16:55 helping his team to sixth place in the team standings.
Edgewood acting cross country coach Luke Stecki said Hill ran a good race and Brandon Wetherbee had a big day for the Warriors.
Geneva boys and girls cross country coach Emily Long said she likes to keep the district meet a special surprise and not compete on the course prior to the big event but transportation challenges led to the team's coming this year.
Long's Geneva girls finished seventh in the team standings and are excited about their finish, Long said.
"We are happy," she said.
"That is the first time Renee [Tetlow] has PR'ed since she was a freshman," Long said of the senior.
Tetlow and teammate Mya Evangelista both ran just under the 20-minute mark followed closely by Grace Dubsky at 20:09.
"I think it is going to give them a positive burst into districts," Long said.
The Edgewood girls faced a difficult challenge and finished 10th out of 21 teams when their lead runner, Maddie Crooks, was removed from the course, a coaching decision, at the 1.25-mile mark with a knee problem, Stecki said.
He said the girls are focused on trying to get to Columbus for the state meet.
The Madison girls team finished 12th with Taylor Hennessey leading the way in a time of 21:01. Madison's boys finished 10th with four runners packed close together, including Brayden White at 18:01; Noah Anderson at 18:18; Izaiah Siler at 18:25 and Daniel Frager at 18:43.
The Pymatuning Valley girl, led by Josie Miller with a time of 21:05, which led the Lakers to a 14th-place finish. The p
The PV boys, led by Mason Summers with a time of 18:28, also finished 14th.
The Lakeside boys finished 16th with Thurston Shaw leading the team with a time of 18:14 and the girls had only four runners complete the course, with Alexis Ricket leading the way with a time of 26:40.