Andrew Hylen (16:08) and Ben Hylen (16:23) continued to lead the Laker pack with second and third-place finishes. The Lakers also saw strong performances by Cameron Thalhammer (17:00), Matthew Vanderwall (17:14), Will Brown (18:04), Callen Carrier (18:15), and Nathan Peterson (18:38) to push the Lakers to their invitational championship.
Cam Hall (18:41), Evan Schock (18:45), Jack Leech (19:01) and Hunter Vetula (19:17) placed in the top 20 of the junior varsity race, with two more Lakers on the cusp.
“This pack of boys has been working hard day in and day out at practice, and growing stronger and watching their times drop with each meet,” said Spring Lake head coach Erin Carmody. “Grand Haven is a strong team and is led by two outstanding coaches in John Tarr and Will Hewitt. They run tight and provide excellent competition, which makes them fun to race against.”
The Lakers will run again Wednesday afternoon in their first O-K Blue Conference meet of the season at Riverside Park.
Grand Haven boys cross country adds runner-up finish
The Grand Haven boys cross country team added its third runner-up trophy to their 2017 collection Saturday at the West Ottawa Bredeweg Invitational, despite the absence of No. 1 runner Jack Nicholson. Spring Lake won the meet, beating the Bucs by one point, 78-79.
Junior Andrew Ireland led Grand Haven, finishing in eighth-place overall in the competitive field with a time of 16:55.
“Andrew did a great job leading us,” said Grand Haven head coach John Tarr. “We knew that we had a shot at the championship, even without Jack, but we came up just short against a very good Spring Lake team. Erin Carmody is doing a great job with those boys.”
Also scoring for the Bucs were: freshmen Cole Rowden (16:59), Aidan Martin (17:03), Dominic Weatherwax (17:05) and Jared Franke (17:34). Kyle Eveland (17:39) and Nathan Wolffis (18:17) finished off the varsity seven.
The team had 34 season records with improvements ranging from 30 seconds to two minutes. Cole Rowden went under 17 for the first time, and Jared Franke running in his first varsity race improved by over a minute. Along with Ireland and Rowden, Martin and Weatherwax also medaled for the Bucs.
Junior varsity: The Grand Haven boys junior varsity team dominated their race with newcomer Jake Fischer winning the overall race with a time of 18:01.
Also medaling in the JV race for the Bucs were: Max Sepeshy, Aaron Hughes, Caleb Borns, Jack Reus, Evan Dubridge and Brendan Gross.
“All of our guys really stepped up,” added Tarr. “Taking home 12 medals in both races really shows how much depth we have and how much potential this team has.”
Grand Haven runs again Friday at the Spartan Invite at Forest Akers East Golf Course in the Spartan Elite Race, one of the most competitive races of the season.
GH girls also finish runner-up
The Grand Haven girls cross country team finished runner-up out of 13 schools at the West Ottawa Bredeweg Invitational on Saturday with 60 points.
Host school and fellow O-K Red foe West Ottawa took first-place honors with 33 points.
Junior Gabby Hentemann led the race from start to finish with a season best time of 18:58, while Emily Mattson (20:21) finished seventh, Abby Buitenhuis (20:32) finished 13th, Meadow White (20:38) finished 19th and Kelsie McManus (20:39) finished 20th to round out the scoring for the Bucs.
“Gabby had a real nice race. She went out at a pretty good clip and was able to maneuver through the windy trail section of the course well and ran the last mile by herself,” said Grand Haven head coach Scott Przystas. “Emily had the race of the day. This has been a long time coming for her and she competed and moved up spots throughout the race. I think this was a huge breakthrough for her against some good competition.
“Juniors Kelsie McManus and Giovanna Maracek (20:54) each had lifetime personal records in their first varsity race. They also broke through some barriers during their races. We still have some work to do, but we will see West Ottawa at five more races this season, so I look forward to our girls competing and closing some gaps.”
SL girls cross country finishes fourth
The Spring Lake girls cross country team finished fourth at the West Ottawa Bredeweg Invitational on Saturday with 110 points.
West Ottawa took medalist honors with 33 points, while Grand Haven finished second with 60 points and Forest Hills Northern finished third with 91 points.
The Lakers were led by Maggie Cooper, who finished in 12th place with a time of 20:31. Lizzy Penrice finished 14th overall (20:31), while Julia Bajt (20:57), Eva Tilton (21:03) and Taylor Rebone (21:08) rounded out the team scoring.
Fruitport boys cross country finishes runner-up
The Fruitport boys cross country team competed against 10 other schools at the Fremont Hill and Bale invitational on Saturday. The Trojans finished runner-up with 82 points, behind last year’s state runner-up, Fremont, who scored 31 points at the event to take top honors.
Senior Cameron Oleen placed fourth with a time of 17 minutes, 14 seconds to lead Fruitport, while Brendan Deneen (17:54), Jon Wildey (19:01), Peyton Sharlow (19:18) and Cameron Weaver (19:24) rounded out the team scoring.
Fruitport girls cross country finishes fourth
The Fruitport girls cross country team finished fourth with 113 points on Saturday at the Fremont Hill and Bale Invitational.
Reeths-Puffer took top team honors with 32 points, while Fremont finished runner-up with 43 points and Newaygo finished third with 76 points.
Faith Clark finished seventh overall with a time of 21 minutes, 47 seconds to lead Fruitport, while Kendra Johnson (23:15), Taylor Burke (24:52), Abby Sykes (25:08) and Kallie Fehler (26:14) rounded out the team scoring.
Fruitport volleyball finishes 2-2-2
The Fruitport volleyball team had a strong showing at its own home invitational on Saturday, advancing all the way to the semifinal round of the gold bracket before being ousted by Forest Hills Northern.
The Huskies went on the win the tournament, defeating Gull Lake, 25-17, 18-25, 15-9.
Fruitport came out of a tough pool as the third-place seed in the gold bracket, defeating North Muskegon (25-13, 25-16), falling to Forest Hills Northern (20-25, 23-25) and splitting matches with West Ottawa (23-25, 25-17) and Whitehall (22-25, 25-19).
In gold bracket play, the Trojans defeated Montague (25-23, 25-8), but dropping a tough rematch with Forest Hills Northern in the semifinal, 27-29 and 16-25.
Kylie Oberlin and Jordyn Carlyle led the Trojan attack in the middle with 37 and 35 kills, respectively. Setter Kailey Carmean had a strong day, posting 112 assists and 22 digs.
Fruitport's strong defense was lead by Trinity Busscher with 55 digs and Chloe Kern recorded 31 digs.
The Trojans (14-7-2 ) will host O-K Black Conference foe Jenison at home Tuesday.
GH volleyball finishes 2-2 at Novi tournament
The Grand Haven volleyball team competed at the Novi Invitational tournament on Saturday, finishing 2-2 on the day.
The Buccaneers defeated Flint Powers Catholic (25-18, 25-10) and Grosse Pointe North (25-19, 25-21), but dropped a tough match to Northville (19-25, 13-25) to finish 2-1 in pool play.
In the quarterfinal round, Grand Haven lost to No. 5-ranked Clarkston (11-25, 18-25).
“We didn’t serve well, and we didn’t pass very well at times,” said Grand Haven head coach Aaron Smaka. “We played hard all day, so the effort was there, and the second game against Clarkston was a lot better. We just have to get in the gym this week and work on some things. We have to play cleaner volleyball, especially against top-level competition, if we are going to win those matchups.”
Sophomore Reilly Swierbut recorded seven aces and 35 kills to lead the Bucs, while Ashley Slater added 27 kills, Olivia Boeve had 20 kills and 20 digs and Sarah Knoll had 10.
Senior Lauren Jonker recorded seven blocks, Ashlyn Hall had 41 assists and Baby Hang had 21 digs.
The Buccaneers travel to Hudsonville on Thursday for an O-K Red Conference match.
SL girls swimming finishes 15th at West Michigan relays
The Spring Lake girls swimming and diving team took on the West Michigan relays this weekend, with the Lakers diving team taking a seventh-place finish Friday and the swim team taking 15th-place at Saturday’s event.
“Many of the teams at the West Michigan Relay meet are top in the state, so it was great to swim against some very tough competitors and see some fast swimming,” said Spring Lake coach Kaci Wiebenga. “It was also fun to get to swim some unusual races including the 400-yard individual medley relay and other relays made up of different combinations.”
Fruitport soccer falls to Mona Shores
The Fruitport boys soccer team had a tough road matchup with O-K Black Conference rival Mona Shores on Saturday.
The Sailors came away with a 5-1 win over the Trojans, with Fruitport senior Zack Shane notching the team’s only goal.
“It was not our day. No breaks or bounces went our way,” said Fruitport head coach Greg Kobylak. “Next week, we will be better as we will regain our legs and take a different mindset.”