What to see when meeting in Greater Lansing
Mason’s Meghan Ford and Stockbridge’s Rylee Tolson each won titles under a modified Greater Lansing Cross Country Championship, which was split into four divisions last year.
Now the two standouts are said to be among the top candidates to achieve overall victory this year when the annual meeting takes place on Saturday at Ledge Meadows Golf Course in Grand Ledge.
The battle for the girls’ title is one of the storylines that begin on Saturday.
Tolson and Ford set the best times among all runners from the region who are part of the field this year. Tolson, who won the Division 2 portion of the meeting last fall, is the only runner in the field to have a time faster than 18 minutes this year. She has a season best time of 17 minutes, 28.3 seconds.
Ford was the Division 1 champion last season and will start on Saturday with a season best of 18: 18.5 – the second fastest among the runners in the field.
Other top contenders for the 10 o’clock girls’ race include a quartet of juniors in East Lansings Anna Delgado, Lansing Catholics Hannah Pricco, Grand Ledges Taylor Pangburn and Holts Emma Netzel.
In the girls’ race, the fastest female runner in the region and the reigning runner of the year in Ithacas Lani Bloom are missing. Ithaca is not part of the meeting this season. Bloom was the Division 3 champion of the Greater Lansing Championships last year.
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Another East Lansing Boys Champion?
The boys’ race, due to start at 10:40 a.m., will have a champion for the first time. ‘
A couple of runners should be in the mix for the title, and that includes a pair from East Lansing in seniors Matthew Zeleke and Jayden Page.
Zeleke was runner-up in the Division 1 boys’ race last season, just behind team-mate Nathan Faust. This autumn, Zeleke has the fastest time of all boy runners with 15: 24.0. He won all of his races this fall outside of the Legend Classic at the Huron Meadows Metropark earlier this month.
Liam Elder from Grand Ledge and Camden Johnecheck from Williamston are the other runners in the field alongside Zeleke and Page, who have times faster than 16 minutes this season.
Okemos among the top team title contenders
Both the boys ‘and girls’ teams from Okemos are represented in the current division 1 ranking and are among the top contenders for the team title.
The Okemos boys are in 13th place in the current ranking and will start as the boys’ front runners on Saturday. The Okemos girls are # 11 on this week’s poll, just behind Howell as a team favorite. Okemos won the team title in Division 1 of the girls’ race last season.
Other leading contenders on the boy side are St. Johns, East Lansing, St. Louis, DeWitt, and Lansing Catholic. St. Johns was the Boys’ Division 1 champion last season and is ranked 7th in Division 2. Lansing Catholic is ranked 5th in Division 3.
Okemos include Grand Ledge, Lansing Catholic, DeWitt and Mason as top contenders for the girls’ title. Lansing Catholic is ranked 3rd in Division 3 while Mason is ranked 7th in Division 2.
Contact Brian Calloway at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @brian_calloway.