TRAVERSE CITY — Not quite sure exactly where the finish line was, Anthony Berry slowed up a bit.
Kingsley’s Jake Keena almost caught him.
Berry held on to win the high school boys race at the Fifth Third Bank Golden Mile in 4:22.9, while Keena’s time was 4:23.3.
“I thought I had at least a few more paces,” said Berry, who just finished his freshman year at Traverse City Central. “I actually didn’t know where the finish was, so I slowed down a little (before it), but I’m happy I pulled it out at the end. I was a little farther back coming down the stretch than I was hoping, but I usually have a good kick at the end and that helped.”
“I think there’s a chance I (caught him),” Keena said of the finish.
Even though many onlookers couldn’t tell who had won, the Kingsley sophomore ended up a very close second.
“I tried to stay back the whole race and then at the end, push it a little more,” Keena said. “It was pretty neck-and-neck all the way.”
West Bloomfield’s Erin Finn — a University of Michigan recruit — won the girls race in 4:51 by 15 seconds.
“I was hoping me or Kyle (Dotterrer) would win it, someone from Traverse,” Berry said. “It just all played out. I really was thinking a lot about this race the last several days and getting my mind set on it, which helped.”
Dotterrer ended up sixth in 4:26.3.
Behind the close finish of Berry and Keena, Royal Oak’s Ben Hill was third in 4:23.6, Ludington’s Luke Johnson fourth at 4:24.0 and Saginaw’s Nate Cruz fifth in 4:24.5. The 10 boys competitors were only 13 seconds apart from first to 10th, and four second between first and fourth.
“The heat is something else to take into consideration for me, because I don’t like running in heat that much,” said Berry, 15.