West Lafayette’s girls cross country runners already proved themselves against the best in the state.
Now they’ll go up against some of the best in the Midwest, with an eye on reaching the national stage.
The Red Devils will compete at Sunday’s Nike Midwest Regional at the LaVern Gibson Championship Cross Country Course in Terre Haute. Two weeks ago on the same course, West Side finished second at the state meet.
Runners from Illinois, Michigan, Missouri and Ohio will also compete.
The top two teams and top five individuals not on those teams qualify for the 9th Annual Nike Cross Nationals in Portland, Ore., on Dec. 1. A limited number of at-large teams are also chosen. West Lafayette’s girls finished 14th at the regional meet last year.
Bobbie Burgess, Grace Lachmund, Cailey Daluga, Kristen Johnson, Lauren Johnson, Delaney Barber and Grace Denton comprised the Red Devils’ state lineup.
“They’ve just got to relax and not get stressed out,” West Lafayette coach Steve Lewark said. “Don’t think about, ‘This is really important. We want to make it to nationals.’ If they just do what they did all season and run they’re race, they’ll be OK.”
Burgess, who finished third at the state meet, was named first team Class 3A-4A All-State by the Indiana Association of Track and Cross Country Coaches.
All seven Red Devils from the state lineup were recognized: Lachmund (second team), Daluga and Kristen and Lauren Johnson (third team) and Barber and Denton (honorable mention).
Also honored were Twin Lakes’s Madeline Lilly (second team 3A-4A), Faith Christian’s Maggy Markley (third team 1A-2A) and Seeger’s Cara Fowler and Rebecca Haussin (honorable mention 1A-2A).
Boys selections included McCutcheon’s Jacob Wickes and Mason McKinney (honorable mention 5A), West Lafayette’s Cooper Williams (second team 3A-4A), and Jake Cohen (honorable mention), Carroll’s Brian Bordner (third team 1A-2A) and Faith Christian’s Sam Nelson (honorable mention 1A-2A).