WESTON — D.C. Everest boys cross country coach Brad Seeley laughed a bit at the question Thursday.
How do you feel you can do this weekend?
“It’s a hard question to answer because anything can happen at the state meet, there’s no question about it. I’ve seen just about everything happen at the state meet,” Seeley said. “But we’re going in there confident and excited. … We’ve talked about having a top 15 finish, but it’s so hard to say.”
The Evergreens earned a spot in the Division 1 field for Saturday’s WIAA state cross country meet by finishing second in last weekend’s sectional meet in Stevens Point.
“We’re excited to be there, but we believe that we belong,” Seeley said. “Our goal is not just to get there, but to do well when we get there. We have always pushed that.”
The Evergreens enter the meet running about as well as a team as they have at any point of the season.
“I always tell the guys it’s not about how you start (the season), it’s about how you end,” Seeley said. “Our goal is to constantly improve and we really have come far from our first meet at Rhinelander. We always set the goal of going to state, but we definitely improved drastically from the beginning to the point where we are now. …
“We really became a team.”
Anthony Anderson, the Evergreens’ top runner, won the Wisconsin Valley Conference and sectional individual titles and has the third-fastest time 5,000 meter time in the program’s history at 15 minutes, 49 seconds. His teammates have had solid seasons as well.
“Logan Spooner has really put it together (this year). We battled some injuries with him at the beginning of the season, but through hard work and patience he has really put it together and is running his best when it means the most,” Seeley said. “Another guy that really jumps out is Michael Steinke. He was a JV runner and running in the mid-19 (minutes) last year. Now he is running in the mid-17s. He just has the ability to push himself.”
Making a debut
Two freshmen from the Wisconsin Valley Conference will be making their debut at the state meet Saturday: Wausau West’s Brooke Jaworski and D.C. Everest’s Malorie Schmoll.
Jaworski won the WVC title and was third in the sectional meet.
Schmoll finished ninth overall at the sectional meet and is the first Evergreens girls runner to qualify for the state meet since 2011.
Tim Johnson can be reached at 715-845-0731 or [email protected] Find him on Twitter @timmyjo11
Run for state championship
What: 103rd running of WIAA boys cross country meet and 43rd annual girls meet
When: Saturday, first race starts at noon
Where: The Ridges Golf Course, Wisconsin Rapids
Ar ea qualifiers: Division 1— Boys: D.C. Everest (Anthony Anderson, Logan Spooner, Trever Zunker, Aaron Carr, Isaiah Winowiski, Michael Steinke, John Nelson); Wausau East (Axel Treinen, Bryan Lemmer). Girls: D.C. Everest (Malorie Schmoll); Wausau West (Brooke Jaworski).
Division 3— Boys: Marathon (Xavier Lechleitner, Jordan Balz); Athens (Josh Langteau). Girls: Marathon (Anna Buchberger, Alysha Stieber); Athens (Autumn Wickman)