By Chuck Reherman
EDMOND – Opting for a challenge.
That’s what Yukon Millerette cross country coach Rod Zimmerman elected to do at that last minite this past week.
YHS was set to run in the “Don’t Fence Me in” meet in Chicksha on Friday. But after looking at the field, Zimmerman wanted to give his team more of a challenge, so he called and got the Millerettes in the Pre-State Meet Saturday at Edmond Santa Fe.
And, the Millerettes responded with a fourth place finish against the top teams in class 6A.
“We made a last minute decision this week to split our varsity and three of our top JV runners off from the rest of our team and go to Edmond for the Pre State meet,” Zimmerman said. “It is the state meet site and many of the girls ran on the course last year but a few of them have not so it was good to get them in a race there and also let them experience the level of competition we saw there.
“This was our toughest race this year,” he added. “We have been in races where there were good teams and tough competition, Mustang, Carl Albert, Choctaw all three were good meets but the Pre State meet is definitely the toughest of all of them, several ranked teams were there in the mix including our girls who held their own. The meet is very similar to what a regional and state meet are like.”
The Millerettes had one top 10 finisher and one other in the top 25 (a third finished 26th) to finish fourth with 115 points. Broken Arrow won the meet with 79 points, Owasso finished second with 80 and Norman North third with 96 in the field of 14 teams.
Avery Stanley continued to have the best finish for the Millerettes, running fourth in 19 minutes and 37.98 seconds. She finished just .73 behind third place finished Lily Melton of Broken Arrow.
Harper Barlow had her best performance of the season, finishing 19th in a time of 20:59.24. Elora Jones was 26th in 21:12.68, Rena Henson was 32nd in 21:28.14 and Kailan Parks rounded out the scoring with a 34th place time of 21:36.52.
Bri Abbott (50th in 22:13.83) and Lauren Brown (75th in 23:13.52) rounded out the top seven.
“Avery ran well,” Zimmerman said. “She ran just faster than her best time this year and her second fastest career time. Harper was our second finisher running right at her career personal record.
“The rest of our varsity were just off of their season best times so we know as we move through the next month and we are getting faster we can compete with these teams,” He added. “Our three JV runners had good races also Emily (Schneider) ran her fastest race of the season and was just 10 seconds away from her career PR, she has been struggling this year but has had some good workouts the last week and a good race this week.
“Our two freshmen Nora (England Jarvis and Emma (Rounder) ran good races also, I wanted to see how they held up to the atmosphere and even the JV races at meets like this are really competitive. They did a great job and handled everything well. The team is working really well in workouts and having a great year. All 10 of these girls are important to this team’s performance and getting us through the next month and to the state meet.”
The Millerettes and Millers will travel east to Tulsa to compete in the Ram Rendevouz at Mohawk Park in Tulsa. The meet begins at 3:30 p.m.