Depth and experience are key words for the MHS boys and girls cross country teams for the 2017 season. The varsity girls return five of the top six runners from last year’s Northeast Conference championship team. The Lady Bulldogs were the Region 1A runners-up, and finished in 11th place at the State Class A meet. The boys team will be quite young, but they also return five of the top six from last season. “We have one of the top runners in the NEC and region – eighth-grader Nick Batchelor,” says Milbank Head Cross Country Coach Eric Townsend. Townsend is in his 17th year as the head cross country coach for the Bulldogs. He will be assisted by Josh Schmeichel.
Milbank starts their 2017 season with the Breathe Easy meet at Pine Hills Golf Course on Monday, August 28, at 5 p.m. Townsend says, “Like every season, the plan is to simply improve each day, practice, and meet. The girls team is hoping to improve their solid group of runners towards the front of each race. The boys team needs to find some consistency in practice and in meets and have the scoring number two, number three, and number four runners closer to the front of the pack in most races.”
Townsend says the girls team will be in the hunt for the conference and region titles. “They will be looking to duplicate their 2016 NEC title, reclaim the region championship, and make a run at earning hardware by placing in the top six at the State A meet.”
The boys are projected to be in the running for their first conference and region titles since 2011. “The team will be looking to improve last year’s third place NEC and fifth place region finishes, and qualify for the state meet for the first time since 2013,” Townsend says.
Returning letterwinners on the girls team include: seniors- Shea Hooth, Christina Lusk, and Sophia Seffrood; junior-Taylor Thue; sophomore – Danica Schulte; freshmen – Allison Leddy and Amaya Street; and eighth-grader Maiah Brown. Completing the girls roster are: junior Justine Wiik; sophomores Tori Hooth and Morgan Schafer; eighth graders Marion Mischel and Savanna Osowski; and seventh graders Mallory Falk, Addie Farrell, Madisen Frerichs, Ashlyn O’Farrell, Elsie Seffrood, and Maurina Street. Senior Allison Pillatzki will serve as the student manager.
Returning for the boys team are: senior- Luke Wold; junior- Ben Harstad; sophomores – Zippy Bock, Alex Farrell, and Batchelor. Filling out the team are: senior Andrew Falk; juniors Kevin Koik and Nathan Loutsch; sophomore- Eli Fischer; freshmen Braden Brandriet, Carter Hartman, and Riley Przybycien; eighth-grader -Jack Sandvig; and seventh-graders – Dylan Bohn and Noah Garcia.
2017 MHS Cross Country Schedule
Seniors pictured are back row, left to right, Andrew Falk, Luke Wold and Sophia Seffrood. Front row, Shea Hooth and Allison Pillatzki.