By Sam Wexler
The Monarch Cross Country Team started off the 2015 season with their annual “Coyote Chase” 5k run and fundraiser. This race also served as a time trial to see who would run varsity (top 7) at the first meet. The course this year was different than years past due to overgrowth in the old course. Our new course involved 2.5 X 2km loops around the fields, school, and K-8 next door. The course involved a mix of grass and pavement/asphalt. The 2km loop started on the field and ran on grass around the baseball fields and track, then it turned onto the road and sidewalk to connect to another big field behind the school. It then proceeded to wind on the grass through the Monarch K-8 football fields and then back behind the tennis courts. This lap was repeated another time, and on the third time around, rather than continue into the big field behind the school, turned into the finishing chute next to the tennis courts.
The overall champion was Tyler Scholl, a friend of Monarch from Kremmling, CO. He bested the field, running 17:38 for 5k. The top male coyotes all ran in a pack until the last straightaway, in which
Zach Litoff upset Isaac Green, who, as well as Ben Hogan, ran 18:05 for the 5k. Following these boys was Greg Hibl, Charlie Perry, Will Dixon, Riley Sorbo, and David Litoff (yes you read that correctly, it’s Zach’s dad). Rounding out the top twelve for the guys was Brandon Wallace, Max Ruth, Isaac Russo, Declan Stone Murphy, and Mitchell Waters.
The top female coyotes started as a pack, however they spread out more over the course of 3.1 miles than the boys did. The undisputed winner was Holly Bent in 20:45 (no sprinting here), followed by Daisy Fuchs in 21:18, and Liz Hogan in 21:38. Following them was Audrey Lookner and Hailey Leader,
finishing within one second of one another, Alden Gruidel, Emily Hoffmann and Sam Wexler. Rounding out the top twelve for the girls was Brooke Forsythe, Abby Hein, Maddie Johnson, and Libby Moore.
This years Coyote Chase was harder than some of the runners expected when looking at the relative flatness of the course, however the smoke from the wild fires, combined with differing footing conditions, heat, sun, and the fact that it was a time trial made the times a little slower and the effort harder. It was a successful first race and brought in money for the program as well as setting varsity for the next week.