Sore ribs didn’t slow down a Mustang Wednesday, and two Grizzlies somersaulted their way across the finish line Wednesday afternoon at Gibbons Park.

In one of the last cross country tune-up meets before the Region 11 championship later this month, Logan hosted Green Canyon and Mountain Crest. The Grizzlies took the boys team title, while the Wolves edged the Mustangs for the girls.

Individually, Mountain Crest freshman Jordan Merrill led from start to finish to capture the win despite running after a horse accident on Tuesday. In the boys race, Logan’s Alex Rasmussen and Ian Bressel battled each other most of the race before Rasmussen pulled away toward the end. Both finished off their runs by doing a somersault over the finish line.

“We did have fun today,” Bressel said. “We had joked about doing a somersault at the end and today agreed to do it.”

“We wanted to have a fun race,” Rasmussen said. “I was pretty chill with whatever happened between me and Ian.”

The Grizzly boys had three runners in the top three as Stratford Needham was fourth and their top five who count toward team score were in the top 11. Logan finished with 28 points, while Green Canyon finished at 40. The Wolves were led by Branson Sharp, who finished third, individually. Mountain Crest (61) was without defending region champ Spencer O’Very, who missed the meet due to illness.

“My plan was to try and beat Spencer O’Very, but then he wasn’t here,” Sharp said. “So, then I wanted to try and stick with those top guys.”

Despite Merrill winning and having a nice pack of Mustangs — the top five were among the top nine finishers — Green Canyon was able to win the girls race with 27 points to Mountain Crest’s 29. Taylor Hancey was second, Bella Jensen third and Lauren Hancey fourth for the Wolves.

Logan was a bit short-handed as its top runner was absent due to Homecoming obligations. The Grizzlies finished with 85 points.

Merrill bruised some ribs and strained her neck when she fell off a horse the day before the race. She was training the horse to jump, and it went down going over an obstacle. That didn’t stop the freshman from going out and crossing the finish line in first in 20 minutes, 49 seconds.

“Mostly, I just wanted to do my best,” Merrill said. “I knew that I didn’t feel super good, so I didn’t want to die, but I wanted to run.”

Merrill and teammate Lauralynn Seamons jumped out in front at the start of the race. Soon the Hancey twins and Jensen joined Merrill as Seamons, who ended up sixth, dropped from the lead group. Merrill pulled away from the trio of Wolves on a big hill.

 

Shawn Harrison is the sports editor at The Herald Journal. He can be reached at sharrison@hjnews.com or 435-792-7233.

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