Menominee’s Kameron Burmeister sprints to the finish line in her first-place finish at the Stephenson Lions Invitational at the Dale Fountain Cross Country Course Saturday morning.<br>EagleHerald/Tom Kaeser
Menominee’s Kameron Burmeister sprints to the finish line in her first-place finish at the Stephenson Lions Invitational at the Dale Fountain Cross Country Course Saturday morning.
EagleHerald/Tom Kaeser
BANAT - Kameron Burmeister's solitary miles under the hot summer sun has powered the Menominee runner to victory runs in front of cheering crowds on crisp fall mornings.
Burmeister broke away from the 79-runner field in the first mile at the Stephenson Lions Invitational and turned the slants, slopes and scenery of the Dale Fountain Cross Country Course into another show of gold medal toughness.
Burmeister crossed the finish line out of the sight of the other runners with her time of 19:24 to lead the Maroons fourth-place finish.
After building up a 40-second lead in the first mile, Burmeister had only her hard-driving resolve and the watch on her wrist to challenge her.
"I pretty much try to stay with the goal I have in mind," Burmeister explained. "When you're by yourself you have to go by your watch. It's takes mental strength. When you're running by yourself, you feel like you're flying."
Burmeister clipped 33 seconds off her time at last year's meet.
"It seems like a pretty fast course for me," Burmeister noted. "I'm glad the GNCs are here."
Lilly Johnson had an 18th-place run (22:37) for the Maroons.
Escanaba swept the girls' and boys' team titles.
The Esky girls finished with 42 points while the Maroons totaled 108 points following a grueling week of practice.
"We worked really hard this week," said Merrill. "We needed strength training. "We lost the battle today, but hopefully we'll win the war in our future meets."
Eric Cousineau won the boys' race to lead Escanaba to the title. The Eskymos compiled 46 points. Menominee placed sixth with 195 points, edging out Stephenson by seven points.
Davey Luplow timed in at 17:37 to earn a seventh-place medal for the Maroon boys and Gunther DeDamos overcame sore muscles from the rigorous week of training to claim an 11th-place medal (18:03).
"I thought I could have run a little bit faster," said Luplow. "Gunther and I had a strategy to start out a little slower but we fell behind the pack and it was too much ground to make up."
DeDamos, who pushed himself to the max in strength drills, kept pushing himself after his muscles "locked up" on the first hill.
The Maroons competed without injured runners Cody Porath and Adam Nolde.
Stephenson's Connor Cappaert continued his medal-charge season with a fifth-place clocking of 17:20.
"I knew it would be a hard-fought race," Cappaert said. "There was a lot of talent here. needed a boost of confidence for the GNCs."
The cool weather helped bring out the best in the Eagles' leader.
"I like sweatshirt weather. It's perfect weather to run in. It really helps my times."
The surprise of the day was the third-place finish by one of the smallest schools in the meet, North Central, in the boys' meet.
Seth Polfus took 17th (18:18:21) and Bryce Holle was 18th (18:24) to lead the Jets.
"It's the best showing ever by our boys' team here," coach Jerry Root said. "I'm excited for them. They've worked hard for this."
Jensyn Schaal's 15th-place medal time of 18:18 paced Coleman and Evan Beranek was 19th in 18:26 to lead Lena/St. Thomas Aquinas. Dionte Blahnik led Carney-Nadeau with his 20th-place run in 18:29.
Kimberly Carlson raced to a 15th-place medal in 22:18 to lead the Coleman girls and Brooke Parrett paced Stephenson with her 30th-place run (23:24).
Jack Hendricks led the Menominee boys' junior varsity at the Stephenson Lions Invitational Saturday with his time of 23:17.
Kayla Standridge's time of 24:41 paced the Maroon junior varsity girls.
The Fountain course, carved out of scenic farmland, will be the site of the Great Northern Conference meet Oct. 10.
"Stephenson always puts on a great meet," Merrill said. "We appreciate all the work (Stephenson) coach Michael Herres and the Koller family has put in. It's one of the most beautiful courses in the U.P."
Girls' Team Scores: Escanaba 42, Hancock 67, Gladstone 87, Menominee 108, Negaunee 132, Kingsford 149, Munising 170, Norway 204, Coleman 217, Stepenson 228
MENOMINEE (108) - 1. Kameron Burmeister, 19:24; 18. Lilly Johnson, 22:37; 27. Anah Schloegel, 23:09; 28. Paige Reiswitz, 23:10; 28. Rebekah Wickman, 23:45, 39. Paiton Plutchak, 23:45, 52. Paige Tickler, 24:51
COLEMAN (217) - 15. Kimberly Carlson, 22:19, 48. Ashley Ryner 24:31, 55. Sadie Dukert, 25:01, 59. Hope Process, 25:30, 62. Mallory Olcote, 25:36
STEPHENSON (228) - 30. Brooke Parrett, 23:24, 50. Caitlyn Havelka, 24:35; 53. Sarah Williams, 24:51; 56. Katie Marks, 25:05, 61. Sydnee Engel, 25:31, 67. Kaitlyn Miller, 26:31, 72. Rachel Starzynski, 27:10
CARNEY-NADEAU - 66. Morgan Dupont, 26:29, 68. Sam Charlier, 26:34
LENA/STAA - 75. Marissa Slemkes, 28:23, 77. Megan Wenzel, 31:14
Boys' Team Scores: Escanaba 46, Negaunee 98, North Central 141, Kingsford 147, Hancock 162, Menominee 195, Stephenson 202, Munising 202, Lena/STAA 213, Gladstone 222, Coleman 239, Ironwood 247, Ironwood 247, Carney-Nadeau 254, Norway 333
MENOMINEE (195) - 7. Davey Luplow, 17:37, 11. Gunther DeDamos, 18:03, 60. Erik Pohlmann, 21:10, 63. Josh DeGayner, 21:17, 72. Michael Melchoir, 21:58, 90. Chad Schuelke, 28:19
STEPHENSON (202) - 5. Conner Cappaert, 17:20, 42. Josiah Newlin, 20:29, 54. Brandon Kau, 21:00, 52. Mark Cappaert, 21:05, 65. Josh Thoney, 21:23; 71. Ian Menke, 21:57
NORTH CENTRAL (141) - 17. Seth Polfus, 18:21, 18. Bryce Holle, 18:24, 39. Dillon Robinson, 20:20, 40. Joel Granquist 20:28, 44. Tyler Bentley, 20:31
LENA/STAA (213) - 19. Evan Beranek, 18:26, 43. Mikel Schmidt, 20:20, 46. Mitchell Harvey, 20:46, 52. Jake Jones, 20:52, 78. Henry Benson, 22:47
COLEMAN (239) - 15. Jensyn Schaal, 18:18, 42. Jake Schell, 20:30, 58. Brandon Champagne, 21:02, 66. Jordan Blanchard, 21:29, 80. Brandon Lake, 83. Jimmy Jopek
CARNEY-NADEAU (254) - 20. Dionte Blahnik, 18:29, 46. Austin Johnson, 20:37, 68. Manuel Duran, 69. Mason Linder, 73. Logan Forgette, 82. Lucas Forgette