Miner girls win Region 10, boys’ team takes second
For Park City High School cross-country runner Camille Breiholz, the Region 10 championship meet on Wednesday went a little differently from probably imagined. Breiholz has been a non-scorer (outside the top five runners) for most of the 2016 season for the Miners. Even when she was entered into the varsity race at the region championships, there wasn’t much expectation for her to score.
But when teammate Mackenna Doilney went down with a knee injury during the race, Breiholz entered uncharted waters. Suddenly, it was up to her, now the fifth and final counted runner for Park City, to bring home the region title for her team.
“In the middle of the race, we are trying to yell at Camille and tell her, ‘Hey, you’re fifth. We need you,” Head Coach Steve Cuttitta said.
Breiholz heard her coach and stepped up for her team with a 14th-place finish as the fifth runner, securing first place for the Miners with a total of 38 points, just four points better than the second-place finisher Stansbury. If not for Breiholz having her race of the season, Cuttitta isn’t sure his team would have walked away from the Cottonwood Complex in Salt Lake City victorious.
“She had the best race of her life and really, she’s the reason we have the region title,” Cuttitta said.
Running without their best runner in Madison Carr, who is hoping to win an individual state title next weekend and worked out on Wednesday instead of running in the race, Park City was still able to bring home the Region 10 crown. Leading the way was Sydney Oraskovich (18:54.4), who finished in fifth place overall, while Daisy Townshend (19:13.4) and Liza Greene (19:13.6) finished basically side by side in sixth and seventh places, respectively.
The Miners placed four runners in the top 10 when Sydney LaPine (19:30.7) crossed the finish line in 10th place, while Breiholz (20:42.7) rounded out the top five.
“With every team every year, I’m waiting, like, where’s that moment of reckoning where I say, ‘Now we’re ready. Now we’re a good team. Now we’re going to be competitive,’” Cuttitta said. “For the girls, that happened [on Wednesday].”
Winning the race individually was Makayla Komer from Tooele in a time of 17:34.5, half a minute faster than the second-place finisher Zoe Hales of Stansbury.
The boys’ team also saw success at the Region 10 championships with a second-place team finish, falling to a Stansbury team that placed four runners in the top five. Kyle Weldon (16:14.2) crossed the tape first for the Miners in eighth place, while Anton Hibl (16:50.9) followed not far behind in 12th.
Rounding out the top five was a pack of Park City runners finishing within five seconds of each other: Jacob Freeman (17:04.2), Jack McMullin (17:04.8) and Jackson Parker (17:08.8) in 15th, 16th and 17th places, respectively.
“I think they are peaking at the right time,” Cuttitta said of the boys’ team. “They are certainly running better now than they were two weeks ago and four weeks ago.”
Winning the race was Hawk Call (15:04.2) from Stansbury, followed by Seth Beckett (15:31.4) of Grantsville. The Stallions would take the next three places to round out the top five in the race. They also had their five scoring runners all finish before Park City’s first finisher in Weldon.
The Miners also had impressive showings in both the boys’ and girls’ JV races. Stephanie Burnham (20:14.9) took home a first-place finish in the girls’ race in come-from-behind fashion after chasing down the race leader with a quarter mile to go, while Nick Burnz (16:30.1) finished as the first Miner in the boys’ race in third place overall.
The JV teams took home the same places as the varsity ones; first in the girls’ race and second in the boys.
“For a lot of our kids, that was their last race of the season,” Cuttitta said. “We had some great performances there. … [Burnham] was able to win [the JV race], which kind of started the day off. To win that was great.”
Next up for these two teams is the moment that they’ve been training for all season long, the state championships. With some impressive performances in the JV races at the region meet, Cuttitta will have some tough decisions to make when it comes to deciding who will be the counted runners come this upcoming Wednesday.
“Basically, we take the seven fastest times in the region meet, whether they were in JV and varsity,” Cuttitta said. “Some of those kids in the JV race definitely earned a varsity spot. So we take the whole season into consideration, but with a little more emphasis on that last region race.”
No matter who lines up at the start at the state meet next week, the Miners will be ready to run once that starting gun goes off.
“I’m excited for next week. We’re in a good spot,” Cuttitta said.
The state championships will take place at Sugar House Park in Salt Lake City. The girls’ race will start at 1 p.m. while the boys will race at 2:30 p.m.
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