Girls Junior Varsity Cross Country, Girls Varsity Cross Country · Girls XC Suffers First Loss on Tiebreaker

When the MHSAA announced the return of sports, inevitably it came with some caveats for all sports.  For cross country one of the major changes was a cap set at 70 athletes per race.  Ultimately this resulted in some of the larger and most competitive invitational meets being cancelled due to logistical problems with the number of athletes in races and athletes/spectators present at a given location.  To solve this problem, the girls XC program sought to create their own mini invite style race (West Ottawa Girls XC Invite) with some of the most competitive D1 and D2 teams in the State.  Today that meet came to fruition with the #4, #5, #7, #9 (West Ottawa), and #15 teams in D1 and #5 & #9 teams in D2 coming together to compete at Riverside Park in Grand Rapids.  The race did not disappoint as #9 West Ottawa and #7 Saline tied for 1st with 54 pts.  It cross country to break a tie, whichever team’s 6th finisher finishes first is deemed the winner.  Saline’s 6th finisher was ahead of West Ottawa’s so Saline won on the tiebreaker.

Arianne Olson (So.) led the Panthers finishing second overall in a season best 18:13.  Sophie Bonnema (Jr.) finished 7th in a lifetime best of 19:19 while Abby Bonnema (Jr.) was right behind in 9th also in a lifetime best of 19:22. Megan Postma was 17th in a lifetime best of 19:45, while Kaia Denhof rounded out the team scoring with a season best time of 20:01, finishing 26th. Others running season and personal bests in the Varsity race were:

Lillian Reiner (So.) 20:34

Abby Green (Jr.) 21:18

Team Results

  1. Saline – 54
  2. West Ottawa – 54
  3. Northville – 68
  4. Brighton 98
  5. Shepherd – 140
  6. Otsego – 150
  7. Bay City Western – 150
  8. Zeeland East – 201

In the JV race the Panthers finished 3rd with 80 pts.  Emily Laird (Sr.) led the way in 3rd overall in a season best 21:42. She was followed by Lauren Catton (Fr.) in a lifetime best of 22:22 (10th), Claire Vellinga (Jr.) in a season best 22:43 (16th), Anna VanderWege (Jr.) in a lifetime best of 23:36 (25th), and Rachel Kennedy (Jr.) in a season best 23:56 (30th).  Other Panthers with season and lifetimes bests were:

Caitlin Derby (Jr.) – 23:58

Kayla Berghorst (Fr.) – 24:10


GO WO! Mask up and Stay Safe.