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OSSIAN—Yogi Berra once redundantly noted "it was deja vu all over again."
That was the case Saturday at the Adams-Wells County Cross Country Invitational at Norwell High School as the same two teams that won the Bellmont Conditioner meet last Tuesday again won titles with the Bellmont girls edging out Norwell while South Adams stormed to an easy triumph in the boys meet.
The meet was somewhat different than a traditional cross country meet with each of the six teams running alternate laps of one mile for a total of six miles. The top three relay teams' times were then added up to determine the winner unlike a regular meet where the top five runners have their finishes count as points.
Bellmont coach Carl Risch praised the effort given by his Squaws noting "all six girls (in the top three relays) had to do their thing. It was a great team effort because they all ran intelligent races by showing some restraint in the first lap and didn't go out real fast. That gave them something extra for the last two. Some teams didn't do that."
Risch paired inexperience with experience in picking Bailey Beery and Sarah Garner for one team, Allyson Norby and Cadence Faurote for another, and Emily Gunsett and Alexis Harvey for the third. Bellmont had an additional five runners that competed as well but their times did not count.
For the Bellmont girls, it actually came down to their third team which finished seventh that assured them the win. Gunsett and Harvey ran a total time of 41:02.5 but Norwell's third team came in tenth with a 42:20.1 clocking meaning that Bellmont edged Norwell 1:58:06.8 to 1:59:30.05.
South Adams easily breezed to the boys title with a time of 97:43.9 as the Starfires swept first, fourth, fifth, and sixth to win (they also competed two other teams that were 13th and 17th in the 24-team field)
Brody Shane and Evan Liechty both ran all three of their laps under 5:30 to outdistance second place Norwell (Nathan Garver and Brent Bales) by a 31:43.3 to 32:11.8 time. Bales was the individual winner at the Bellmont Conditioner last week but his best lap of 5:05.9 was just the third best of the day behind a 5:04.6 opening frame by Liechty (along with times of 5:27.5 and 5:23.4) and 5:05.6 from Shane (along with times of 5:16.1 and 5:25.9). Garver was third at 16:04.8 while Bates ended up fourth in 16:06.7.
Bellmont's Josh Porter and Adam Garner were third at 32:36 with Porter going 5:15.1, 5:29.0, and 5:34.8 and Garner ending up at 5:21.0, 5:29.0, and 5:26.8 to help the Braves to a second place team finish in 103:06.1
For South Adams, Joel Hawbaker and Sawyer Miller took fourth at 32:36 (Hawbaker 5:11.4, 5:30.0, and 5:31.4 and Miller 5:20.1, 5:30.0, and 5:33.2) and Daniel Velasco (5:20.8, 5:37.2, and 5:44.7) and Simon Sprunger (5:16.6, 5:33.5, and 5:37.3) were fifth. Although their time didn't count, Starfires Clayton Rhoades (5:25.5, 5:33.7, and 5:49.2) and Andrew Steffen (5:16.1, 5:36.6, and 5:42.9) were in sixth place.