ST. JOHNS — New Lothrop wrapped up Mid-Michigan Activities Conference cross country championships in both the boys and girls competitions with their third jamboree wins in as many tries Tuesday. New Lothrop’s Carson Hersch and Clara Krupp ran to individual league titles in comfortable fashion.
On a colorful autumn day at Uncle Johns Cider Mill, Hersch remained unbeaten in 2020, clocking a time of 16 minutes, 11.49 seconds through the apple orchards and mostly grassy course. That was nearly a minute ahead of the rest of the field. Two Montrose runners, Chase Hobson (17:07.36) and Seth Coffin (17:15.72) ran second and third, respectively.
New Lothrop, which scored 26 points to hold off second-place Chesaning (50) and third-place Montrose (63), also featured Drew Kohlmann (fourth, 17:21.92), Cole Yaros (fifth, 17:22.42), Ryan Heslip (seventh, 17:59.18) and Jason Weber (ninth, 18:42.25).
Hersch, wearing his bright orange shoes, said he felt strong from the outset.
“This is probably my favorite course because I’ve seen it and it’s not double looped,” Hersch said a couple minutes after finishing.
When Hersch came down a large hill less than a mile from the finish, he said he just had to be careful with its steep descent.
“You have to be careful where you step or else you’ll twist an ankle or something like that,” Hersch said. “I ran a 16:11 today and it was a nice time and we had great weather, nice and shady. We thought the sun was going to come out.”
Hersch won the first MMAC jamboree Sept. 16 in 16:02 at Byron, then won again in Chesaning (16:24.4) two weeks later. Hersch owns the New Lothrop school record of 15:30.8, which he set Oct. 3 at Shepherd.
While Montrose filled the second and third slots, Hersch said that his teammates still did the job to wrap up the team championship.
“I think the team did really well today,” Hersch said.
Chesaning’s Levi Maier ran sixth in 17:46.98. Teammates Jaden James was eighth (18:33.22) and Addison James was 10th (18:50.34).
Montrose finished third in the boys standings (63 points), with Ovid-Elsie running fourth (90) and Byron taking fifth (137).
Coleten Towsley-Wagner of Ovid-Elsie finished 11th in 19:05.35. Corbin Walker of Chesaning (19:09.81), Aaron Vincke of New Lothrop (19:10.11), Mason Struck of Chesaning (19:16.13) and Brennan Unangst of New Lothrop (19:25.96) rounded out the top 15.
Byron’s top boys runner was Nick Normann, who placed 25th (20:26.77).
The girls race took place 45 minutes after the boys competition and it was the same result. New Lothrop won with 35 points and Ovid-Elsie was second (66). Montrose followed in third (81), Byron placed fourth (84) and Chesaning fifth (92).
Krupp, a junior, led from the first few seconds of the race and maintained that advantage throughout. Krupp broke the tape in 20:25.83.
“I felt pretty good — I felt a little tired but it was OK,” Krupp said moments after crossing the finish. “I like this course.”
Just under 39 seconds behind was second-place Paige Allard of Montrose (21:04.28) with O-E’s Alexis Spitzley placing third (21:37.05). Olivia Grover of Chesaning was fourth (22:16.39) and New Lothrop’s Josie Bauman ran fifth (22:23.84).
Krupp, like Hersch, won the first two MMAC jamborees — she ran a 20:36 at Byron and a 20:19.1 at Chesaning.
The top 10 on Tuesday was rounded out by Taylor Bailey of Chesaning (sixth, 22:34.72), Raven Paris of Byron (seventh, 22:43.71), Cailyn Adduddell of New Lothrop (eighth, 22:54.34), Kaia Spiess of Ovid-Elsie (ninth, 22:59.58) and Klara Mulcahy of New Lothrop (10th, 23:05.08).
The 10th through 15 spots were filled by Lindsey Wendling of New Lothrop (23:14.19), Emma Seigle of Montrose (23:24.96), Meghan McPherson of Durand (23:18.05), Logan Zerka of Durand (23:33.29) and Jenna Belmas of Byron (23:47.34).