50 Tickets to Brooklyn: #43

The List

  • You know, I talk all the time about the effect of certain coaches, but I haven’t said much about Coach Collette’s effect on the West Michigan Aviation squad last year
  • Although it didn’t end in a state meet berth, there was a noticeable improvement in many of their runners, Emma being a prime example
  • She flashed some potential and attained some results as a freshman, winning the Alliance League, breaking 20:00, qualifying for State
  • 2021 was a season where she cashed in on that potential, withdrawing a 10th(!) place finish at MIS
  • The Aviators took off /glided/reached Mach 4 (you pick the bad pun) in October, Emma was at the forefront of their ascent (I can’t help myself)
  • A 19:15 at Portage was a personal best, that was followed by another best at the Alliance Conference meet, and another one at State
  • Not satisfied with just one championship season peak, she doubled back on that come track, running personal bests in the 1600m at Regionals and State, narrowly missing an All-State selection

10Emma DeVries20:06.4123.9Alliance League 1Calvary Laketown1-Sep
10Emma DeVries19:26.2125.3SpartaFruitridge Hayrides18-Sep
10Emma DeVries20:39.5142.2Alliance League 3Johnson Park6-Oct
10Emma Devries19:15.1139.0PortagePortage West MS9-Oct
10Emma DeVries19:36.8138.4Kent OttawaGainey Fields16-Oct
10Emma DeVries19:08.1127.3Alliance ConferenceFruitport Calvary Christian19-Oct
10Emma DeVries19:56.9138.414 SFRCSt. Francis Retreat Center29-Oct
10Emma DeVries18:55.9138.0D2 StateMIS6-Nov

9Emma DeVries83.3Ravenna BulldogRavenna HS8-Sep
9Emma DeVries106.2Harriers for HopePeacock Tree Farm19-Sep
9Emma DeVries115.2Alliance 1Johnson Park23-Sep
9Emma DeVries114.8Allendale FalconAllendale HS3-Oct
9Emma DeVries120.9Autumn SunriseHeritage Christian10-Oct
9Emma DeVries123.1PR 26South Christian Sports Park23-Oct
9Emma DeVries124.1D2 Reg 13Otsego HS31-Oct
9Emma DeVries117.0D2 StateMIS6-Nov

  • Clayton is just one in a line of Ackleys and Enns that have found success in our sport
    • His parents both ran for Cornerstone, his sisters Alayna (15th at the D2 10k), Lynae, Savannah, and Adelyn (broke 16:00/34:00 this past season) are all running in college, his cousins, the Enns have millions of All-States to their name, I could keep going
  • It would be easy to let the pressure of others success inhibit one’s love for running, be a burden on the start line, but Clayton has gone the opposite direction, and appears primed to make even more a name for himself in the coming year
  • As a Hart teammate, he has been able to contribute to the Pirates immense accomplishments in the past three years, a top-5 team in each of those years
  • He always seems to bring his best performance for that stage, whether that be an 8 sec. PB this past year or stepping up as their 2nd runner as a freshman
  • He brought that same energy to Kent City in early June as well, nailing a 10+ sec. PB to finish 4th in the 3200m

11Clayton Ackley16:54.7184.1Pete MossBenzie Central HS28-Aug
11Clayton Ackley17:00.1182.0Leanne Wolf GeersMason County Fairgrounds9-Sep
11Clayton Ackley16:59.8184.7WMD 1Walkerville14-Sep
11Clayton Ackley16:42.0194.0SpartanForest Akers17-Sep
11Clayton Ackley16:38.0183.3WMC 2Montague HS21-Sep
11Clayton Ackley16:46.7186.4Cougar FalconGainey Fields25-Sep
11Clayton Ackley16:34.5187.5BluejayShepherd HS2-Oct
11Clayton Ackley16:40.7189.1PortagePortage West MS9-Oct
11Clayton Ackley18:44.6183.1WMC ChampShelby HS12-Oct
11Clayton Ackley16:52.4175.9Hart & SoleColonial GC16-Oct
11Clayton Ackley16:41.7179.8Mel HallSpring Lake HS23-Oct
11Clayton Ackley16:27.2177.320 BenzieBenzie Central HS30-Oct
11Clayton Ackley16:19.3188.2D3 StateMIS6-Nov
11Clayton Ackley16:39.5185.8MMOCShepherd HS13-Nov

10Clayton Ackley181.5Pete MossBenzie Central HS29-Aug
10Clayton Ackley168.7Wolf GeersMason County Fairgrounds10-Sep
10Clayton Ackley169.3LudingtonWest Shore CC19-Sep
10Clayton Ackley168.1WMC OakridgeOakridge HS22-Sep
10Clayton Ackley173.5Cougar FalconGainey Fields26-Sep
10Clayton Ackley181.9Allendale FalconAllendale HS3-Oct
10Clayton Ackley162.7WMC ConferenceUniversity Park GC13-Oct
10Clayton Ackley171.1PR 40Manistee HS23-Oct
10Clayton Ackley168.3D3 Reg 20Buckley HS31-Oct
10Clayton Ackley177.6D3 StateMIS7-Nov

9Clayton Ackley171.2Pete MossBenzie Central
9Clayton Ackley157.8SpartanForest Akers
9Clayton Ackley150.2Allendale FalconAllendale HS
9Clayton Ackley164.8PortagePortage West MS
9Clayton Ackley180.2Mel HallSpring Lake HS
9Clayton Ackley176.320Benzie Central
9Clayton Ackley179.9D3 StateMIS

50 Tickets to Brooklyn: #44

50 Tickets

  • Aiden began to turn heads as a middle school sensation, winning the Lenawee County meet as a 7th and 8th grader
  • He’s continued to bring it at the high school level, helping bring the Maples back to the forefront of Division 2, where they’ve finished in the top-15 each of his three seasons
  • And that feat has been repeated on the track, where their 4×8 team has finished in the past two seasons
  • Individually, he began to pick up the pace toward the tail end of his sophomore cross campaign
  • He ran a personal best of 15:59 at the Meet of Champions and nabbed an All-State berth as well
  • His 2021 season didn’t end with an All-State accolade, but he still broke 16:30 twice
  • This past track season shows he’s added some strength to his repertoire, that 9:38 in the 3200m gives hope that he can progress further into the 15’s and step on the MIS podium again

11Aiden Smith16:55.3202.2Lenawee County PreviewTecumseh HS21-Aug
11Aiden Smith17:55.8177.4Bert CebulskiHeritage Park (Adrian)26-Aug
11Aiden Smith16:17.4200.2A2 Early BirdHuron Meadows2-Sep
11Aiden Smith16:44.5191.5SEC 1Hudson Mills (South)14-Sep
11Aiden Smith16:19.4195.5Cougar FalconGainey Fields25-Sep
11Aiden Smith17:05.3196.6SEC White 2Bennett Park28-Sep
11Aiden Smith16:16.1193.3Otsego BulldogOtsego HS2-Oct
11Aiden Smith16:49.9185.4Lenawee CountyGerber Hill Park16-Oct
11Aiden Smith17:56.4179.918 Lake ErieLake Erie30-Oct
11Aiden Smith16:30.4187.2D2 StateMIS6-Nov
11Aiden Smith16:19.6192.5MMOCShepherd HS13-Nov

10Aiden Smith173.7Adrian/Chelsea/Tecumseh TriHeritage Park (Adrian)26-Aug
10Aiden Smith170.7Adrian/Dexter/Tecumseh TriHeritage Park (Adrian)4-Sep
10Aiden Smith166.3Adrian/Hudson/Skyline/TecumsehHeritage Park (Adrian)12-Sep
10Aiden Smith188.5JacksonSharp Park19-Sep
10Aiden Smith175.4Adrian/Pinckney/TecumsehHeritage Park26-Sep
10Aiden Smith180.8Adrian/BedfordIndian Creek Park3-Oct
10Aiden Smith187.6PR 35Heritage Park (Adrian)24-Oct
10Aiden Smith191.2D2 Reg 18Lake Erie31-Oct
10Aiden Smith191.8D2 StateMIS6-Nov

9Aiden Smith193.4Lenawee PreviewTecumseh HS
9Aiden Smith191.2Bert CebulskiHeritage Park (Adrian)
9Aiden Smith187.8A2 Early BirdHuron Meadows
9Aiden Smith186.9HuronWillow
9Aiden Smith178.7JacksonSharp Park
9Aiden Smith188.9Hudson BoosterHudson HS
9Aiden Smith191.8Lenawee CountyGerber Hill Park
9Aiden Smith175.7SECHudson Mills (North)
9Aiden Smith183.618Lake Erie
9Aiden Smith187.2D2 StateMIS

  • The Pride of Mendon, Presley was another middle school wonder, having gone undefeated as an 8th grader, setting herself up for a great freshman campaign and career
  • And boy, she lived up to that billing
  • Victories were had at Otsego Bulldog, St. Joseph County, and Region 32
  • High placings were there at Portage, Class D, and D4 State
  • And best of which, she was able to lead the Hornets to their first appearance in Brooklyn since 2015
  • Having been to a few of those races, I was impressed with how Presley sticks her nose in there, even if it meant going out a little hard and fading
  • That ability to hit paces while fatigued will come, and we saw evidence of that in track with her 5:14/11:22 double at State

9Presley Allen19:08.6151.8BridgmanLake Township Park25-Aug
9Presley Allen19:10.7123.8SW10 1Centreville HS22-Sep
9Presley Allen19:01.2142.6JacksonSharp Park25-Sep
9Presley Allen18:44.4144.9Otsego BulldogOtsego HS2-Oct
9Presley Allen18:37.6151.5PortagePortage West MS9-Oct
9Presley Allen19:04.6133.8Sturgis KiwanisSturgis MS16-Oct
9Presley Allen18:43.7132.1SW 10 3Bloomingdale HS20-Oct
9Presley Allen19:00.3132.2Class DShepherd HS23-Oct
9Presley Allen19:02.1132.632 PortagePortage West MS29-Oct
9Presley Allen19:27.2122.6D4 StateMIS6-Nov
9Presley Allen18:54.9139.4MMOCShepherd HS13-Nov


50 Tickets to Brooklyn: #45

50 Tickets

  • Lila came into the high school scene projected to be a top freshman and she’s lived up to those expectations
  • At the middle school level, she won multiple races, got into the 12’s in cross country, and broke 6:00 in 8th grade
  • On the track, she’s continued that progress into track, improving from 5:43 to 5:16 and displaying some 800m speed along the way
  • Last fall, she eased into the season with a few introductory races, then just started shattering barriers one after another: sub-20 at Central Montcalm, sub-19 at Shepherd
  • And along the way, became the #1 girl on a Kent City squad that got better as the year went along, all the way to a 2nd place finish at MIS
  • Lila just knows success, as she’s a prominent part of a basketball team that finished as state runners-up as well

9Lila Volkers19:35.1136.0CM HornetCentral Montcalm HS11-Sep
9Lila Volkers19:29.9124.0SpartaFruitridge Hayrides18-Sep
9Lila Volkers18:57.0140.0BluejayShepherd HS2-Oct
9Lila Volkers18:59.6144.1PortagePortage West MS9-Oct
9Lila Volkers19:10.9147.0Kent OttawaGainey Fields16-Oct
9Lila Volkers18:47.7135.421 AllendaleAllendale HS30-Oct
9Lila Volkers18:54.6133.8D3 StateMIS6-Nov
9Lila Volkers19:07.1135.3MMOCShepherd HS13-Nov

  • Grand Rapids Christian sure just turns them out, huh? Last year, you had Tinsae and Zwart, Reuben is coming into his own, and you’ve got more in the pipeline as well
  • Reuben is just one of those that has stuck around and made progress throughout every year, now that progress has turned into reliability and occasionally, greatness
  • As a freshman and sophomore, he showed glimpses of speed, breaking 18:00 in both campaigns, but never establishing a consistency
  • But from October 2nd 2021 on, all his performances were sub-17:00, coinciding with the Eagles run towards a top-5 finish at MIS.
    • Even on a regional day where most of the state trudged through swamps, he still ran 16:48 to finish 7th at Allendale
  • But back to that improvement, his best time as a sophomore was 17:32, his best as a junior, 16:32
    • Which plays out in the ratings too, in championship season, his average drop was more than a minute per race
  • Similar jumps abounded during track as well, 2:16 to 1:59 and 4:45 to 4:21
    • As a late bloomer, can that be 1:55 and 4:15 next year? I’m betting on it

11Reuben Wiering17:18.5176.2Pete MossBenzie Central HS28-Aug
11Reuben Wiering17:31.2171.6OK White 1Gainey Fields8-Sep
11Reuben Wiering17:18.4178.2Ottawa HillsRiverside Park17-Sep
11Reuben Wiering16:39.7182.4OK White 2Riverside Park22-Sep
11Reuben Wiering17:02.2181.3Cougar FalconGainey Fields25-Sep
11Reuben Wiering16:46.6183.1Otsego BulldogOtsego HS2-Oct
11Reuben Wiering16:32.5182.8OK White 3Brookside GC6-Oct
11Reuben Wiering16:46.3187.2PortagePortage West MS9-Oct
11Reuben Wiering16:45.8181.1OK White 4South Christian HS20-Oct
11Reuben Wiering16:48.5181.211 AllendaleAllendale HS30-Oct
11Reuben Wiering16:40.0184.0D2 StateMIS6-Nov
11Reuben Wiering16:47.2183.3MMOCShepherd HS13-Nov

10Reuben Wiering155.5FHE GRC DualGainey Fields22-Aug
10Reuben Wiering152.8Pete MossBenzie Central HS29-Aug
10Reuben Wiering147.6OK White (GF)Gainey Fields16-Sep
10Reuben Wiering149.8OK White 2Lowell HS23-Sep
10Reuben Wiering163.1Cougar FalconGainey Fields26-Sep
10Reuben Wiering168.5Bulldog EliteOtsego HS3-Oct
10Reuben Wiering165.5OK White ChampionshipByron Center West MS14-Oct
10Reuben Wiering167.3Kent OttawaGainey Fields17-Oct
10Reuben Wiering159.1PR 26South Christian Sports Park23-Oct
10Reuben Wiering160.5D2 Reg 13Otsego HS31-Oct
10Reuben Wiering156.8D2 StateMIS6-Nov

9Reuben Wiering149.3Pete MossBenzie Central HS
9Reuben Wiering114.1Christian SchoolSouth Christian Athletic Complex
9Reuben Wiering137.5Cougar FalconGainey Fields
9Reuben Wiering153.3Otsego BulldogOtsego HS
9Reuben Wiering159.4PortagePortage West MS
9Reuben Wiering152.1OK GoldThornapple Kellogg HS
9Reuben Wiering162.2Allendale PROMAllendale HS