Brownstown cross country starts next week


Familiar faces will be up front today when the Brownstown Central cross country teams open their season in the Borden Invitational, starting at 9 a.m.

Derrick Koch will be coaching the girls after coaching the boys for the past several seasons, and Bailey McIntire will coach the boys.

This will be McIntire’s first year coaching the boys. He helped coach track last spring.

Koch said he expects Trinity Cody to lead the Brownstown girls and for twins Chance and Shane Ratliff to lead the boys.

“We’ve had some faithful runners for the summer, so that always makes for a good team,” he said. “For the most part, they’ve been really faithful in coming out and putting in time. I’m excited.”

The seniors are Tori Lokey, Riley Pumphrey, Kelsey Schneider, Maddie Singleton and Lexie Wheeles.

“I’m looking for good leadership out of them to get the rest of the girls on track and stay motivated for the season,” Koch said. “I look for Trinity to be our No. 1. She was late last year. We’ve had some good runners here at the top. Kelsey has been running well, and Claire Chastain has been running well. We’ve got some girls that are working at it.”

Koch said he feels some other girls can make a bid for the top spot.

“We have some that are going to want to try to break their way through to the varsity level. That’s always good. Our depth is also really good. I’m happy with our 13 girls,” he said.

There are only seven boys running, including seniors Brady Blann, Garrett Driver and Traven Wellman.

“If we can stay healthy, the boys will have a good team,” Koch said. “They are really competitive right now. I like watching how they work because they work super hard. The Ratliffs have been putting in some major miles. The rest of the guys are starting to see that, as well. The Ratliffs are really our leaders in their efforts, and the kids see how hard they’re working. They’ll be side by side. The rest are trying their best to close the gap. The boys were really faithful this summer.”

Koch is anxious for a meet.

“We’re going to get started earlier here and kind of build that fitness and endurance that we need early,” he said. “I’m looking forward to the meet at Borden, and I’m looking forward to the meet at Seymour. I hear Borden is a good course, so we’ll see how the guys start off.”

The tournament format has been shortened to three weeks this season. There will be a sectional and regional. Then the top runners and teams will advance to the state competition.

“I think it will be a learning curve,” Koch said. “We’ll have to get used to that. It gives us one more week to train, so that’s good. I’m hoping we’re healthy at the end. That’s the key.”

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