Where: East Jordan Community Park
Don’t know much about this course! Seems to run pretty fast, 30-40 seconds so last year. But everyone is running the same course the same day, so fast doesn’t mean that much, it’s all about the competition. And this final D4 region may be one of the more competitive ones.
2021 Boys: Johannesburg-Lewiston (9th), Petoskey St. Michael (6th), Fairview (25th)
2021 Girls: Johannesburg-Lewiston (6th), Petoskey St. Michael (26th), Gaylord St. Mary (27th)
Last year was all Johannesburg-Lewiston. The Cardinals brought it in their first meet of the year, ravaging the small school competition at Benzie. They brought that same energy through to regionals, but unfortunate COVID news wrecked any chance at a state title. Still, both teams placed in the top 10 and that return visit to MIS is on their minds. But standing in the way are some Harbor Springs teams on the move down from D3. Petoskey St. Michael’s boys will be there, as I said earlier, watch if they can add numbers. They always do, but the five that they have should be enough to move onto the next round. The girls battle between Gaylord St. Mary and East Jordan could be a tight race. Miriam Murrell is a perennial frontrunner, the other battles between each team’s 2nd girl, 3rd girl, are all up for grabs.
Top 25 Boys Teams: Johannesburg-Lewiston (Top 7), Harbor Springs (Top 7), Petoskey St. Michael (8th)
Top 25 Girls Teams: Johannesburg-Lewiston (Top 7), Harbor Springs (8th), East Jordan (24th), Gaylord St. Mary (25th)
Just a little rundown of those in the top-15 that haven’t been mentioned in the 50 Tickets, the Top Tens (a few teams here!), and aren’t freshmen. Many of these are just scouring athleticnet (note – if you have a kid you want to brag about, reach out, tell me their story), but it’s more attention paid than many publications, it helps me learn names, and most of all – GETS ATTENTION TOWARDS KIDS THAT DESERVE IT.
Lars Huffman, Mackinaw City: His MIS experience in 2021 was a full minute faster than in 2020. Twenty-one places as well, earning him a 20th place spot.
Samuel Ford, Fairview: Great peak from Sam. After struggling to break 19:00 for much of the year, came through with two straight sub-18:30’s to close the season.
Arin Pyles, Fairview: Consistent mid-19:00 performer as a freshman, displayed a bit of speed during track, getting as low as 2:18 in the 800m.
Cooper Whipkey, Mackinaw City: His seventeen races before the 2021 season were all above 20:00. His eleven races in the 2021 season were all sub-20:00.
Miriam Murrell, Gaylord St. Mary: Junior is well-accustomed to this championship stage. Three-time All-State, twice regional champ. Gascho had the upper hand in 2021, but my guess is Miriam doesn’t give this up easily.
Maia Romeyn, Ellsworth: Just as Miriam, another girl who had experience running at the HS level as an 8th grader. And thus, has four consecutive top-10 regional finishes to her credit.
Jessie Ross, Fairview: Although her times didn’t improve from her freshman to sophomore year, her places did, getting from 69th to 50th at State.
Christine Whitaker, East Jordan: Each of the past two years has run a massive personal best at Regionals.
Lilian Curtis, East Jordan: Neeearly snuck under 22:00 in her final race as a freshman, but nailed a 40+ second personal best on the way there.