PHS girls looking for strong showing at state

by Greg Ceilley
of The Review staff


PLYMOUTH’S MAGGIE MUNSON (190), Ellie Welsch (193) and Carly Lilek compete in the Division 2 girls sectional cross country meet Saturday in Two Rivers. The Panther team advanced to state with a runner-up finish. – Photo by Tyler Luedtke PLYMOUTH’S MAGGIE MUNSON (190), Ellie Welsch (193) and Carly Lilek compete in the Division 2 girls sectional cross country meet Saturday in Two Rivers. The Panther team advanced to state with a runner-up finish. – Photo by Tyler Luedtke PLYMOUTH – The Plymouth girls cross country team will try to keep its momentum going Saturday in the Division 2 state meet.

The Panthers won their second straight East Central Conference title on Oct. 14 and then earned their third consecutive trip to state with a runner-up finish in Saturday’s sectional meet at Two Rivers.

“Our goal at the state meet is to have our best race of the season,” said PHS head coach Jay Grosshuesch.

“We’ve put together two great races at conference and sectionals, so we have the momentum to finish the year on a high note and would really like to cap it off with a strong performance at state.”

The state cross country championships will be held at the Ridges Golf Course in Wisconsin Rapids. The D-2 girls race is scheduled to start at 1:20 p.m.

PHS finished 10th last year and has three runners returning to state from that squad – senior Ellie Welsch and juniors Lauren Rabe and Amanda Triebensee. The rest of this year’s state team includes seniors Carly Lilek and Sam Meyer and freshmen Maggie Munson and Lilly LaPorte.

“We have been lightening up on the mileage the last couple of weeks, so we expect the girls to be well-rested and strong for the race. Their legs have begun to recover from the banging they take in the heart of the season when the mileage and intensity is higher,” said the longtime PHS coach.

Grosshuesch pointed out the key for the Panthers to have a good state meet.

“The key for us at state is the same as it has been the last two weeks: we have had a nice tight pack of runners. If we can continue that pack running at state and even move that pack up with even faster times, we will do just fine,” he said.

“Lauren and Ellie are doing a great job getting us some great finishes out of our top two and then Maggie and Carly have been doing great the last two weeks to give us a very solid No. 3 and No. 4 runner. Lilly is closing in on those two for a very competitive No. 5 runner.

“Sam, and Amanda have also been important as they have beaten many No. 5 runners on other teams,” said Grosshuesch.

“I like our girls’ attitude going into state. They are excited, but relaxed and they want to continue their streak of good races.

“We also have a nice mix of veterans who have run at state before and new people who will experience it for the first time. Lauren, Ellie and Amanda can draw on the experience to race smart and the new runners can work off the excitement of being there for the first time,” said the coach.

Grosshuesch thinks Freedom and Wisconsin Dells look to be strong as far as the top title contenders in D-2. Freedom and Wisconsin Dells placed third and fifth, respectfully, in last year’s state meet.


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