For the first time in school history, the Spring Valley boys’ cross-country team was a state championship participant. Earning a team spot after their Division 3 section championship second-place finish one week ago, the Cardinals hit the road for the WIAA Division 3 cross-country championship in West Salem on Oct. 31.
Of the 12 participating teams, Spring Valley finished in 10th place with a total of 184 points. Behind the Cardinals were Ladysmith with 208 points and Kenosha St. Joseph Catholic Academy with 210. Just ahead of Spring Valley were The Prairie School (179 points, ninth place), McDonnell Central Catholic (173, eighth) and St. Mary Catholic (172, seventh). Sheboygan Area Lutheran won the state title with 56 total points. Brookwood came in second with 121 and Pacelli was third with 138.
Spring Valley junior Charlie Maier, consistently the team’s top runner, once again crossed the finish line first for the Cardinals. He completed his race in 17 minutes, 11.3 seconds to take eighth place.
Second across the line for Spring Valley was senior Matt Thoms. He took 31st with a time of 18:21.7. Just behind Thoms was Blayne Gregg in 33rd (18:26.7). Rounding out the runners scoring points for Spring Valley was Ryan Burr taking 52nd (18:57.4) and Logen Vorlicek in 60th (19:11.9).
Other runners competing for Spring Valley but not scoring points were Brody Gregg (64th, 19:23.3) and Wylie Brooke (79th, 20:21.4).
It was the second-consecutive year of competing at the state championship for Maier and Thoms. Thoms improved 47 spots from his 78th-place finish one year ago, while Maier moved up 74 positions after taking 82nd last year.
Fellow Dunn-St. Croix Conference runner Parker Schneider of Durand was the top individual runner with a first-place time of 16:05.78. Jarret Carpenter of Cashton was right on Schneider’s heels with a second-place time of 16:07.41.