FROXC89.jpg

Photo by Gidal Kaiser

Frontier’s Branden Simmons, far left, Thomas Tullius and Arthur Zarse lead the pack during the Frontier triangular Thursday in Chalmers.

CHALMERS — In what amounted to a glorified practice for all three schools, Frontier swept its triangular Thursday against Tri-County and Delphi.

The Falcons’ boys won with a perfect score of 15, while the girls won with a score of 17. Cavaliers senior Erin Bahler broke up Frontier’s perfection, placing fourth in 25 minutes, 12 seconds.

White County’s contestants also had one goal — get through the meet unscathed. Tri-County head coach Ryan Harrington held out multiple runners because of injury, and was without top-5 runner Brynn Warren on the girl’s side. Frontier held out Coby Ingersoll in the boy’s race because of injury, according to head coach Melissa Culver-Pekny. She told her runners to push, but not go too hard on a cloudless day with a course that was drenched in sunshine over 95 percent of it.

“We’re really just trying to get ready for conference. That’s the thing — (David) Schultheiss, Harrington and us are just trying to get ready for conference without going too hard. That’s really what’s happening right now.”

Added senior Hannah Simmons, “Today was more of a mental day because you have so many straightaways and you have the heat. It’s all on you to keep going, because there are no breaks. You just have to keep your mind positive and finish.”

Simmons placed sixth (25:51) as the Falcons girls went 1-2-3, had five of the top six runners and flooded the field with 11 of the 20 runners. Courtney Gutwein (22:46), Emma Blissett (23:22) and Campbell Pekny (24:14) led the way.

“We ran to finish,” Simmons said, prompting a laugh from her coach.

“Our girls ran just as expected, too, like they always do,” Culver-Pekny said.

The Falcons scored 17 points, while the Cavaliers scored 44. Becca Brooks was second for Tri-County, placing eighth in 26:18.

“This whole week has been (a training week),” Harrington said. “On Tuesday, we were at North Newton and it was just (a triangular) — so I treated both (meets) the same.

“We came into this week knowing it was going to be a practice week because we just want to survive until conference. That’s really the end goal. I told the kids Monday, ‘You’re not going to like me much this week because we’re training right through.’”

Miguel Perez led the Cavaliers to their 53-point total, breaking into the top 10 at No. 6 (20:43). Frontier’s pack time was under one and a half minutes, with Branden Simmons (18:41) and Thomas Tullius (18:42) leading the way. The pack time between Arthur Zarse, Chase Harner and Nathan Fleury was 54 seconds.

“We have one boy hurt … and Arthur and Chase and Nathan picked up the slack. We did great,” Culver-Pekny said.

All the varsity racers ran together, which Hannah Simmons enjoyed.

“When we train, we train normally (together),” she said. “If I’m training with one of the boys, I can pace better in the race than if I pace with girls.”

Before the race, the seniors from all three schools were recognized in a brief ceremony.