Ishpeming Hematites, Westwood Patriots, Negaunee Miners, Gladstone Braves all claim Mid-Peninsula Conference cross country titles

CHAMPION — Four high schools made claims to championships at the Mid-Peninsula Conference cross country meet held at Wawonowin Country Club on Monday afternoon.

The Ishpeming boys and Westwood girls won team titles, while Emily Paupore of Negaunee and Adam Bruce of Gladstone gained individual championships.

Meet host Westwood won its first girls conference team crown in more than a decade, according to head coach Eric Hill.

The Patriots did it on the strength of their depth as they placed fourth, fifth, sixth, eighth and maybe most importantly, 14th, for their top five runners.

With Negaunee, Gwinn and Manistique not able to field full teams, the Patriots’ scoring was even lower than that for 26 points to runner-up Ishpeming’s 33. Gladstone was third with 65 as there were only three full teams.

Paupore just missed breaking the 20-minute mark in 20:02.5 as teammate Talon Prusi was runner-up more than a minute back in 21:21.0.

And Prusi finished more than 20 seconds ahead of third-place Abby Racine of Ishpeming, who came in at 21:42.7.

Then the Westwood onslaught began. The Pats’ Hannah Mattila was fourth overall, second in team scoring, in 21:46.3, followed by teammates Tessa Leece in fifth and Amanda Matznick in sixth.

The Hematites’ Taylor Longtine was seventh, while Westwood’s Elizabeth Williams was eighth and No. 5 scorer Allyssea Smith 14th. Just for insurance, the Patriots’ Mallory Leece was 19th and Katelyn Milano 22nd.

Gwinn’s lone entrant, Alexia Basner, was 12th, while Manistique’s Ashley McDonald just missed medaling in 16th.

Four schools posted team scores in the boys meet. The deep Hematites won with 25 points as all five of its scorers were in the top 10 and all seven runners finished in the top 13.

Led by Bruce, Gladstone was second with 40, Negaunee third with 73 and Westwood fourth with 104. Gwinn and Manistique didn’t field full teams.

Bruce won in 16:50.5, just over 30 seconds ahead of the Hematites’ Spencer Giroux in 17:21.0.

Ishpeming’s Jonah Broberg was less than a second behind in third in 17:21.9, while teammate Silas Broberg was sixth, Jordan Longtine seventh and Joseph King 10th. IHS’ other two runners kept up with their teammates, Luke King finishing 11th and David Liimatta 13th.

Gladstone’s Jake Strasler was fourth, while Manistique’s lone entrant, Alex Misniakiewicz, was fifth.

Negaunee’s top finisher was Eric Anderson in eighth, while Westwood’s Dartanyan Taylor was 14th and Gwinn’s Jacob Porubsky just missed medaling in 16th.

Next up on the schedule for Negaunee, Ishpeming, Westwood and Gwinn is the West PAC Championship Meet set for McLain State Park outside of Hancock on Thursday afternoon.

Information compiled by Journal Sports Editor Steve Brownlee. His email address is sbrownlee@miningjournal.net.