Harriers finish first complete team, place sixth; Lovik first

John Lovik won cross country at a meet hosted by Elmira leading the way to a sixth-place finish, third among 3A teams for the varsity boys.

The race was the first one with a complete varsity boys team. The additions of Chris Lovely and Robert McGarry rounded out the varsity lineup for the event. The meet is usually held at Orchard Point, but with low water in Fern Ridge Reservoir this year, it was moved to the Country Fair.

The race marks the first time that six runners, all setting PRs, were over the finishing in under 20 minutes this year.

The meet, won by Marist, included 4A teams, 3A teams and some powerful 2A teams, Coach Spinney said.

Lovik finished the race at 16:56 setting a PR.

“He’s been sick, but he’s still been able to manage pretty well,” Coach Wayne Spinney said.

Exact results from the race were not available for varsity boys at press time.

Chris Burford followed Lovik in at 30th and a time of about 18:23.

Lovely finished 40th at 19:15.

Lovely is doing well athletically for a freshman, Coach Spinney said. He’s gotten past the first month of aches and pains and is fairly healthy now, ready to train.

McGarry finished at about 19:30, running varsity for the first time, and Richard Westvik completed the team with a performance of 19:36.

On junior varsity, Aaron Lovik finished third, 19:56, to be the sixth runner on the team to finish under 20 minutes.

A. Lovik stayed with the leaders most of the race, but was “outkicked” in the last 300 meters, Coach Spinney said. It was a classic case of a sophomore race where the runner doesn’t have experience with position in a race.

He will move up to varsity in today’s (Wednesday’s) race at Waterloo.

The gap between first and fifth needs to shrink by at least a minute for the team to be able to do anything at state, Coach Spinney said. The team ran well for its first time out, but “we’re going to need people closing the gap on each other and getting closer to John (Lovik). I think that can happen. We have a little less than a month to do it.”

Megan Snow and Andrea Martin ran varsity, finishing 36th, 24:11, and 45th, 25:23, respectively.

They ran a conservative race to start but were catching other runners during the race and running well by the end of the race, Coach Spinney said.