On Saturday, Oct. 12, the boys and girls of the Williston High School cross country program are scheduled to do battle in Jamestown as part of the WDA Regional Championships.
Thus far in the 2019 season, the defending state champion Williston boys team has placed first in four of their six meets. Meanwhile, the Coyotes girls team has two first place finishes during that span.
According to WHS boys cross country coach Shane Wahlstrom, the Coyotes boys team has made great progress throughout the season, improving their times from last year.
“We still have a lot of work to do but as of now things have been going pretty well,” Wahlstrom states.
One of Williston’s key performers on this year’s boys squad has been senior Micade Shumway. He has been Williston’s top finisher in four of the team’s six meets this year, and has collected three first-place finishes in 2019. Coach Wahlstrom says Shumway’s success is rooted in the fact that he has been running with the Coyotes since the sixth grade.
“He has gained much experience over his years being one of the captains and one of the leaders of our team,” Wahlstrom says of Shumway. “He expects to be at the front in each race, and expects the best out of himself each day.”
Collectively, Wahlstrom says this year’s boys team does not differ much from last year. However, with the added experience of 2019, the Williston running mentor believes there is actually much less pressure this year to perform at a high level heading into the big weekend meet in Jamestown.
“We feel fortunate to have even won one state title, and to be able to have a shot at another feels good,” Wahlstrom adds.
Meanwhile, girls cross country coach Chase Gregory believes growing participation numbers in girls cross country has had a major impact in the overall success of the program. As a result, Gregory says he expects to surprise opposing WDA teams this weekend with a revamped roster. That roster includes Eleni Lovgren, Williston’s standout sophomore who has been the Coyotes top individual finisher in all six meets this season.
“I credit the success of the boys cross team in improving the turn out on the girls side,” Gregory tells the Williston Herald. “Our upperclassmen have really meshed well with the younger girls, and have developed a pack of runners behind Eleni that come and compete every week, helping with our scoring. The attitudes of our girls have been top notch all season.”