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2023 MWHS cross country team

White Hawks Cross Country Kicks Off 2023 Season

By Drew Carlson, 08/29/23, 3:45PM CDT


The Mound Westonka cross country team kicked off the 2023 season in Grantsburg, Wisconsin, on Aug. 24.

2023 Mound Westonka High School Cross Country Team

2023 Mound Westonka High School Cross Country Team

The Mound Westonka cross country team kicked off the 2023 season in Grantsburg, Wisconsin, on Aug. 24 with a soaring start and great leadership from this year’s captains and coaches. This year's captains are seniors Charlie Paul, Brandon Knock and Cassie Nemecek, and juniors Brooke Garlock and Audrey Kirscht. The coaching staff consists of head coach Butch Humbert, Sara Schwartz, Todd Munsterteiger, Amy Velsor and Karla Humbert.

The girls varsity team dominated the competition and won the meet, with all seven runners placing in the top 15. Sophomore Emma Andrew took first place with 21:39, followed by ninth grader Sophia Engesser in third (22:05), junior Audrey Kirscht in fourth (22:19), ninth grader Anna Reginold in eighth (23:11), senior Cassie Nemecek in 10th (23:40), junior Brooke Garlock in 13th (24:09) and junior Claire Rashleger in 15th (24:29).

The boys varsity team had a strong performance, placing third in the nine-team meet. Senior Charlie Paul led the team with an 11th-place finish (19:23), followed by juniors Isaac Hays in 13th (19:23) and Andrew Finley in 16th place (20:09), ninth grader Owen Trost in 22nd (20:39) and sophomore Luke Sunnarborg in 27th (20:55).

The Westonka middle school teams ran 1.5 miles and had an awesome day, each winning the meet. Seventh grader Hadley Hoag took fourth (11:20), followed by seventh grader Lydia Engesser in sixth (11:30), eighth grader Vayla Jerome in ninth (11:50), eighth grader Elise Hayes in 11th (12:01) and seventh grader Eva Savstrom in 14th (12:27). For the boys, eighth grader Jacob Chilson took first place (9:49), followed by eighth graders Gabriel Lundgren in second (9:51) and Bennett Courneya in fourth (10:15), seventh grader Rayne Shaffer (10:38) in 11th, and eighth grader Griffin Lund in 12th (10:38).

Coach Humbert shared:

We have a nice mix of veterans and rookies on the team this year. I like the balance of younger athletes (27) and older athletes (27). We are also well balanced by gender, although we did lose a lot of depth on our girls varsity, which will be a challenge for us. The Grantsburg Meet went well. We expected good results and we got them. The teams at Grantsburg are smaller, and only a couple of them have strong summer programs. I was proud of our team and the solid summer training we did really pay off.

The next meet will be the Maple Lake Irish Invite on Sept. 1. Coach Humbert commented:

We treat the Grantsburg Meet as a preseason/practice meet, but it was still fun to get back to racing. Our competition really picks up next week. In particular, our Wright County rival Annandale, who is state ranked, will be tough to compete with.

As usual and always, our team is having fun and doing good things for others! We are fresh off our annual training trip and taking part in a Feed My Starving Children event. We continue to train in various ways (we don't just run) and emphasize learning about and applying the research based info of long distance running.  We train our brains as much or more than our bodies!

After the Maple Lake Meet, the team will be headed to Montgomery on Sept. 7 to race against 35 other teams.

MWHS girls varsity cross country team

The MWHS girls varsity team took first place at the Grantsburg Cross Country Meet on Aug. 24.