BENZONIA — This is Benzie Central's time of the year.
The Huskies tuned up for next weekend's Division 3 state cross country races by sweeping the regional here Saturday.
The boys finished with 47 points, Mason County Central 61 and Manistee 115.
The girls, the defending state champions, had 52 points, Mason County Central 69 and Manistee 85. The top three teams advanced.
Alyssa Bennett powered the girls, finishing third overall and just a few seconds off the school record in 18:20.
"Alyssa got a huge PR today," Benzie coach Asa Kelly said. "She's dropped nearly a minute and 10 seconds off the PR she had coming into the season. That has to do with having really good teammates, solid training and a great commitment."
Benzie, ranked No. 2 in Division 3, got a solid performance from Bryce Cutler, who was fifth (18:56). Makayla Huddleston (19:32), Rachael Peabody (19:57) and Sarah Jones (20:01) were all in the top 20.
"We got out nice and strong right from the get-go," Kelly said. "That will wake some people up downstate and should put us right in the mix (for a state title)."
Bennett, a transfer, is in her first season with the Huskies.
"Benzie has a tradition of doing really well at states," she said. "I'm going to give it all I have, do all I can, to represent Benzie the best I can next Saturday."
Manistee's Annie Fuller won the girls race in 17:42. She passed Charlevoix's Amber Way just before the turn to hit the homestretch. Way was second in 17:47. Both times were personal bests for the sophomores.
"I didn't know what kind of time we were going to pull because this is a fast course," Fuller said. "I decided not to do anything more than what it took to win. I decided to stay behind (Way) right until the last stretch instead of running full out the whole time.
"I needed to get in front of her at the turn (before the homestretch). I always rely on my kick at the end."
Way lowered her PR by 20 seconds.
"I knew she (Fuller) was going to be right there," Way said. "Near the end, I thought I had her, but she just took off. That's OK. I tried. I did what I could do. I'm very happy with the race today."
Manistee freshman Ashley Lindeman finished fourth (18:27) while Charlevoix's Olivia Certa was seventh (19:20).
The Benzie boys ran strong, putting five in the top 13. Justin Prange placed eighth (16:32.3), Kyle Bailey ninth (16:32.69), Max Gaft 11th (16:35), Ismael Halaweh 13th (16:39) and Jared Bluhm 16th (16:44).
"We had seven runners under 17 (minutes)," Kelly said. "That was the goal today and we got it. Our first five guys were 12 seconds apart. It was easily our best race of the season.
"The guys came ready to race. We've been flat the last few weeks. We talked a lot about what they were capable of doing today and they were ready. They couldn't wait to put the spikes on this morning. When the gun went off, it showed."
Prange, a Kingsley transfer, led the way.
"I guess we saved it for today," he said of the team's performance. "We didn't taper this week, we're saving that for next week so we can peak at the state finals."
Mason County Central's Chase Bennett ran a blistering 15:24 to win individual honors.
"I knew it would be a great day to run," he said. "We were hoping to win it, but Benzie looked strong."
Kingsley's Jake Keena placed second in a school record 15:52. He ran a 17:01 on the same course early in the season.
"I had a Mason County runner (Zac Benham) on my back the whole way," he said. "That kept pushing me. I tried to stay as consistent as I could and hope for the best."
East Jordan's Josh Wojan came in fifth (16:16).
Manistee's Fuller edges Charlevoix's Way in girls race
BENZONIA — This is Benzie Central's time of the year.
Hounds on verge of elimination in Las Vegas
LAS VEGAS -- Traverse City's penalty killing unit wasn't its usual self Thursday, allowing three power-play goals in a 6-2 UHU national tournament loss to the Soo Firehawks. In the regular season, the Hounds' penalty killers gave up a net three goalsContinued ...
Bob Gwizdz: Perfect day on the Manistee River
WELLSTON -- Tired of waiting for the St. Joseph River to clear up -- and having postponed our annual St. Patrick's Day (or thereabouts) steelhead sojourn already into April -- Jim Romine made the call: We were going to the Manistee River instead. AndContinued ...
DNR seeks solution to Vasa dispute
TRAVERSE CITY -- Fat tire bikers and cross country skiers are hoping for some sort of resolution to a brewing controversy on April 28. The two user groups have struggled to coexist in the first year since TART opened the Vasa trail to fat bikes as aContinued ...
Globetrotters entertain full house at Central
Twins Ezra and Cosmo Franseth were not only able to see the Harlem Globetrotters up close and personal from the front row for their birthday. They also were able to see their parents get involved in the act.Continued ...
Dennis Chase: Area loses one of its all-time best
Kim (Schneider) Monthei, a former All-State basketball player at Elk Rapids, passed away Monday from breast cancer at the University of Michigan Hospital in Ann Arbor. She had just turned 42 on Saturday.Continued ...
Hounds drop opener in national tourney
In Las Vegas, it’s hard to bet against a team with a player named Dice. Dak Dice was among three different Idaho Jr. Steelheads players who scored goals in a 3-0 victory over Traverse City in the UHU national tournament’s opening round.Continued ...
Prep Sports Roundup: Elks remain unbeaten
Nicole Hill netted three goals while Carley Patterson added a goal and two assists as Elk Rapids defeated East Jordan 8-0 in a Lake Michigan Conference match Wednesday. (Plus more)Continued ...
Prep Track Roundup: Trojans sweep Gaylord
Savannah Champion was a champion Wednesday in Traverse City Central’s 120-44 Big North Conference win over Gaylord. (Plus more)Continued ...
5K is May 18
The Community Outreach Council is putting on the Homeward Bound 5K race and fun walk on Sunday, May 18 at Traverse City West Middle School.Continued ...
- Today in Sports: 04/17/2014
- Wednesday, April 16, 2014
Local man hooks 1,200-pound marlin
Robert Steffens will have to remember the trophy fish he caught last month in Hawaii through memories and pictures.Continued ...
Lockwood triumphs after long hiatus
Age is just a number. Kelli Lockwood is 50 years old. But the more important numeral this week for the Traverse City mother of two and bodybuilder is three.Continued ...
Bike race helps support Mt. Holiday
Bikes and skis. The two go together at Mt. Holiday. One helping to support the other — to the tune of $250,000.Continued ...
Sports in Brief: 04/16/2014
Bums hire Burke as broadcaster; Bums sign Gillingham; Spruce Run to open April 22. (Plus more)Continued ...
Prep Sports Roundup: West-Central match switched to Saturday
The Traverse City West-Traverse City Central girls soccer match, scheduled for Tuesday night, was postponed due to the weather. (Plus more)Continued ...
- Today in Sports: 04/16/2014
Michigan Ski Report: 04/16/2014
Michigan ski report for Wednesday, April 16:Continued ...
- Tuesday, April 15, 2014
Traverse City man lands half-ton marlin
TRAVERSE CITY — Old Mission Peninsula resident Robert Steffens is dwarfed by the 1,211-pound blue marlin he caught two weeks ago while fishing in Hawaii. The massive fish's girth and stomach full of tuna made it weigh in as the largest black or PacifContinued ...
Globetrotters bring show to TC
Chuck Schuba fully expects to see his former basketball team lose Wednesday. It’s almost a given.Continued ...
Hounds open with defending champs in Vegas
It’s showtime for the Traverse City Hounds. The Hounds begin their quest for a United Hockey Union Junior national championship Wednesday in Las Vegas.Continued ...
College Notes: Zimmerman has big week for Wayne State
Wayne State first baseman/pitcher Kyle Zimmerman had a big week at the plate, going 7-for-20 with six runs batted in as the Warriors went 6-0. (Plus more)Continued ...
Prep Sports Roundup: Titan golfers 3rd
Traverse City West’s Alex Scott shot a 76 to tie for third at a golf tournament in Saline. (Plus more)Continued ...
- Today in Sports: 04/15/2014
Michigan Ski Report: 04/15/2014
Michigan ski report for Tuesday, April 15:Continued ...
- Monday, April 14, 2014
Prep Sports Roundup: Leland wins Houghton Lake Invite
Leland went undefeated, only allowing one goal in four games, to win the Houghton Lake Invitational girls soccer tournament on Saturday. (Plus more)Continued ...
- Hounds on verge of elimination in Las Vegas