Boys and Girls Cross Country Seasons Come to an end; Sara Mlodik places 12th at State

Conner McFarlane, Editor

“We had a really good season of improvement in my eyes. We kept getting better with each and every meet, and I think that really showed as almost every runner ran their fastest time at our conference meet. It was just really good to see how much we improved since our first race at Rhinelander,” said Boys Head Cross Country Coach Brad Seeley.

At the boys conference meet, senior runners Matthew David and Ethan Hanke led the way for the Evergreens as they both finished inside the top 15, both running under 17 minutes and 30 seconds. The team also had three other runners finish inside the top 50, including Devon Powers, Sean Powers, and Noah Stachovak.

The big story of the season, though, was from the girls team. Sophomore Sara Mlodik, had an outstanding year according to Seeley. Mlodik won the individual conference meet with a time of  19:11.1, which was almost a minute faster than the second place finisher. Mlodik also ended up going to the State meet, at which she finished 12th.

Although crossing the finish line at state and seeing what my entire season has worked up to was an amazing moment, my favorite moments were when I got to do team bonding with my teammates,” said Sara Mlodik, “In those moments it makes us feel more like a team instead of just people, who run together and that deepens my determination for the sport.”

“Sara was really impressive this year. It’s not every year you see a sophomore place that high at state, and to know she’s only a sophomore means she has two full years yet to do even better,” said Seeley.

For the first time in a long time, neither the girls or guys cross country teams ran in the annual Smiley meet  in Wausau. Instead two new meets were scheduled, one in New London, and a dual-meet at home against Merrill. 

“You race against the teams in your conference all year, and we just felt that it 

would be better to travel and see some of the other teams in our sectional instead of going against the same schools we always do at the Smiley event,” said Seeley.

Although it was a tough year for both teams, as neither finished above fifth place in conference, there were still some impressive individual performances on both sides, and having a couple underclassmen placing at conference meets is a good step in the right direction.