Missing in action

Steamboat lags in Summit without top runners

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— A little cough syrup may have been the missing ingredient for the Steamboat Springs boys and girls cross-country teams at Saturday's Summit High School Invitational meet.

With Lee Wren and Charlie Stoddard, two of the boys team's top scoring finishers this season, sidelined due to illness, Steamboat finished in 12th place.

On the girls' side, Steamboat was also missing its top runner, Rachael Caires, and finished 13th.

"It was a big meet with a few big Front Range schools and a couple good teams from Colorado Springs," Steamboat coach Glen Light said.

Cheyenne Mountain won the boys and girls events.

Among Western Slope teams, the Moffat County boys were fourth in Frisco. Battle Mountain, running its B-side junior varsity team, took seventh and Summit took 10th. Steamboat will face those teams at the regional meet on Oct. 21 at Battle Mountain.

Individually, Steamboat's Matt Hill finished seventh.

Light said Hill's time of 17 minutes and 41 seconds was a personal best.

Light was pleased to see his runners competing for the number four and five roster positions on both the boys and girls teams, post their top times at the meet.

"T.J. (Anderson) had his best race of the year; so did Cam Niswander," Light said. "They ended up scoring and Sam Chovan also had a good race."

Although Light said the course was relatively flat with a small hill that allowed some of his runners to place higher than normal, he said the altitude may have caught some of the less experienced runners off guard.

With the girls team still "wide open," for regionals, Light hopes to see more performances from runners like freshman Katherine Lynch, who ran a fast enough time to be scored at the varsity level.

Steamboat has another chance to figure out who will step up to fill those varsity roles in the next meet Saturday in Aspen.

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