Weekly Write Up

On a weekly basis, I like to highlight some individuals and teams that have unexpected success or have made some real improvements that are worth noting.  My selection process couldn’t be more subjective, but I tried to include a wide range of divisions and areas of the state.  Here are a few boys and girls teams that I’ve taken a closer look at:

Team Preseason Rank Current Rank Current Rating
Grandville Calvin Christian 3 (Division 3) 4 114.1
Byron 13 (Division 3) 16 81.8
Bridgman 13 (Division 4) 11 65.6
Livonia Churchill NR (Division 1) 22 111.4


Grandville Calvin Christian (Girls)

I know, they’ve dropped a spot.  I didn’t anticipate Traverse City St. Francis being this good.  Those TCSF girls will get their day on this site soon, but not today.  Grandville’s pack is what will lead to their success.  They have 5 girls over 100, a 6th coming close, and a 7th who has run 20:18.  Catherine Kortman and Olivia Quillan have made noticeable strides (pun intended) early, both knocking 2:00 off their Kent City times, and Quillan 0:28 off her Christian School time.  Both broke 20 last year, early times indicate they’ll do that again.  Grandville runs next at Spartan.

Byron (Girls)

Another team that’s dropped, but likely to move up.  Olivia Krejci’s effort at Genesee is a major factor why they will.  Krejci improved her time by 0:44 from last year and her 119 rating there gives thought to a sub-20 performance later in the year.  After all, it was a PR, one that we should celebrate and I’m sure the team is on a high following their win in the initial MMAC Jamboree.  They’re at Chesaning this afternoon.

Bridgman (Girls)

Bridgman’s early improvements have been stunning.  Karsyn Stewart has averaged over a 2:00 improvement from her times at Bridgman, Optimist, and BS Shamrock.  She ran 6:00/12:36 in track and I think she’s poised for at least a 120 rating by the end of the season (currently her best is 97).  Savanna Tate also stands out.  0:35 faster at BS Shamrock, 0:51 faster at Bridgman.  She ran 22:17 last year on a Center Line-esque Rock N’ Run course, so I trust the 22:56 at State last year as a more accurate portrayal of her form.  Long story short, she’s improved, and so has Mikaela Owen.  The Bridgman girls are at New Prairie (IN) this weekend and we won’t see them again for awhile.  They’ve earned it.

 Livonia Churchill (Girls)

Churchill’s top 4 have all surpassed my expectations.  In fact, I didn’t have any.  A few months ago, when creating my preseason list, they weren’t even on my radar.  Here we are two months later, with Abbie Haupt, Sierra Greener, Grace Vaeth, and Abbie Ortell all knocking almost a minute (or more) off their Ramblin’ Rock times.  The Abbies stick out the most, with Ortell at a 108 rating (think 20:30) and Haupt at a 136 (think 19:12).  These girls are at Spartan tomorrow, I’m sure their coach had no say in that decision.

Team Preseason Rank Current Rank Current Rating
Hudsonville 20 (Division 1) NR 188.7
Lake Fenton 13 (Division 2) NR 174.9
Unionville-Sebewaing 13 (Division 4) 13 158.6
Cedar Springs 4 (Division 2) 12 181.8


Hudsonville (Boys)

Hudsonville almost certainly makes next week’s ratings, likely in the top 15.  Yes, they have the front runners like Nate Vruggink (198 rating, 4:30/9:58 in track) and slight improvements from Asher Berends and Ryan Nibbelink, but freshman Trey Diepenhorst might be a surprise addition.  He ran 11:22 in middle school, I can’t find a 2018 track time, and he runs a 17:36 at Bath.  He could sneak into their top 7, which is already loaded with 6, maybe 7 sub-17 kids.  They will be at Spartan tomorrow.

Lake Fenton (Boys)

Lake Fenton’s Bath performance makes up for their day at Corunna.  Brendan Schroeder is someone who has both shown significant improvement from last year and an ascent from race to race.  Schroeder’s 176 at Bath puts him on a crash course with low 17’s, much better than his 17:55 last year, it’s close to 1:45 (course-adjusted) better than his Corunna time.  Eric Niestroy is another example of a drop.  Through two races, Eric’s rating is 188, a 10 point jump in ratings from last year.  The Blue Devils lost to Corunna in their first jamboree and will be at Spartan tomorrow.  Notice this recurring theme?  Spartan is once again loaded.

Unionville-Sebewaing (Boys)

The biggest reason behind Unionville’s apparent rise is Ty Pavlichek.  Other than a 11:36 in middle school, I can’t find much on the kid, then he runs at 169 at Hatchet.  Bryce Langmaid is also off to a good start, with 160 ratings in both USA and Hatchet.  One issue I have with athletic.net is I can’t figure out which meet a team is attending if the boys and girls are separate.  Their page has Chesaning and Holly.  So maybe we’ll see them at both places, but I’m guessing they’re only at one.

Cedar Springs (Boys)

Austin Mann has made the leap.  Austin ran 11:22 in track, 18:28 last year.  Both solid, decent times for a freshman.  He’s basically continued the same pace from that 2 mile to 164 rating.  3:10 improvement from Kent City, 1:41 from Central Montcalm.  I think they’re on the right track and should move up.   These boys area Sparta on Saturday.

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