KALIDA – It’s not the way you start, but rather how you finish.
Well, that depends on who you ask.
At Saturday’s Kalida Invitational at the Kalida Fish and Game Club, Lima Central Catholic senior Alex Rigg took the more conservative route, as he eventually pulled away for the win on the 5K course in 16 minutes, 29.58 seconds.
After settling behind Wapakoneta’s Dylan Plaugher for the first two miles, Rigg surged past Plaugher and took control in the final mile of the race.
“At first, I decided to take the first mile a little bit slower, but I noticed he went out hard,” Rigg said. “I was hoping he would die off a little quicker, but he stayed strong. So, I just slowly worked on him.
“Just a little beyond the 2-mile mark, I finally caught up to him. I tried to break his will by surging on him. That seemed to do the trick.”
With the district meet only three weeks away, Rigg will change up his training a bit.
“This (coming) week I’m going to start tapering a little bit, because we have the (Allen) County Meet (on Tuesday),” Rigg said. “But the following week, we’ll do one more (week of hard practice), because we don’t have a conference meet. Then, we’ll taper off a lot before districts.”
On Saturday, Wapakoneta won the boys’ team title, outscoring second-place Napoleon, 53-85. Van Buren finished third (104), Ottawa-Glandorf was fourth (126) and St. Marys rounded out the top five (174). There were 13 teams at the invitational.
Wapakoneta placed its top five runners in the top 22 overall spots. Rounding out the top five behind Plaugher for Wapakoneta were Will Zofkie (fourth, 17:00.83), Jordan Bowers (sixth, 17:28.89), Hayden Brandenhoff (21st, 18:11.82) and Jalen Bowersock (22nd, 18:21.19).
On the girls’ side, LCC freshman Emily Sreenan continues to shine.
Saturday, Sreenan took control of the race early and was never challenged. Sreenan’s winning time was 19:06.40. St. Marys’ Kelly Wilker kept Sreenan in sight, but still finished over a minute behind her in 20:23.27.
“I was trying to look behind me,” Sreenan said. “I was hoping she (Wilker) was a little bit closer, so I could run a bit faster and be pushed. But I wasn’t sure (where she was). So, I kept trying to surge whenever I thought it was necessary.”
Bluffton’s Elizabeth Nisly finished third 20:30.25. Kalida’s Katelyn Siebeneck came in fourth (20:35.13), while Napoleon’s Sarah Carpenter was fifth (20:37.88).
St. Marys and Napoleon both scored 55 points Saturday. St. Marys won the sixth-runner tiebreaker and took home the girls’ team title.
Kalida finished third (97), Bluffton came in fourth (98) and Wapakoneta was fifth (119).