Linden — Last year was one of the crowning seasons in Lake Fenton varsity boys cross country history.
The squad won the Flint Metro League Stars Division title and unofficially could’ve been argued as the outright champion based on their efforts at the final Metro meet.
The team also captured the Greater Flint Cross Country Championship title and placed 10 at the D2 state meet.
However, some runners that made that season possible have graduated, so this will be a rebuilding year for the Lake Fenton boys. The boys took sixth-place at the first league jamboree held at Linden Middle School on Wednesday. The Lake Fenton girls also placed sixth.
“All in all it was a good day and we are happy with the results,” Lake Fenton varsity cross country coach Chris Sobczak said. “We know this is a little bit of a down year for our boys team having graduated our top two runners from last year. We keep making improvements every week and hope to be at full strength this Saturday for the Bath Invitational.”
The Blue Devils’ top runner in either varsity event was senior Claire Hunt, who placed eighth on Linden’s demanding 5K course in 21:26.1. The boys’ top finisher was Nolan Pinion in 12th in 17:49.9.
The Lake Fenton boys got their entire scoring five within the official top 40 scoring places (teams ran up to 10 runners, meaning the point placings didn’t necessarily match the actual placings). The rest of Lake Fenton’s top five boys runners were Matt Fletcher, 26th in 18:39.1; Cooper Hnilica, 40th in 19.24.7; Logan Whittecar, 41st in 19:25.0 and Colton Dietrich, 42nd in 19:40.1. The scoring five were all seniors.
The other two that made up Lake Fenton’s top seven were Brady Smith in 45th (19:48.2) and Jamison Chenett in 49th (19:59.2).
For the girls, Hunt was followed by senior Marielle Hatfield in 19th (22:14.4), but none of the other runners on the squad finished within the top 40. The rest of the scoring five were Kaitlyn Hatfield in 53rd (24:34.4), Evelyn Riley in 55th (24:49.6), Emilie Poirier in 73rd (28:02.8). The other two who finished within Lake Fenton’s top seven were MacKenzie McCall in 77th (28:33.2) and Sarah Learman in 82nd (30:06.5).