Buckaroo cross country teams near season end
by Haley Burton
Another week of running is in the books as the Monticello Buckaroos inch their way closer to the state competition, which is three weeks away.
Both the boys and girls teams, led by Coach Jeff Hunt, are pounding the pavement, managing the mud, and grazing over the grass to build miles for the season.
This week proved to be a difficult week with two races and conflicting schedules which decreased team numbers.
Tuesday, September 27 the Buckaroos raced at the Red Rock Invitational hosted by the Grand County Red Devils.
Four 3A schools (Carbon, Richfield, Emery, and Grand), one 2A (San Juan), and two 1A (Monticello and Whitehorse) schools stepped up to the starting line proving to be tough competition.
Marah Long was the only Buckaroo to medal, coming across the finish line in eighth place.
Ayla Carling and Lilli Burton ran in 14th and 15th place, with Alexis Bailey in 42nd.
Curtis Bunker led the boys, finishing in 14th place. He was followed by Kaden Pehrson, Josh Wheeler, Jacob Johnson, Jesse Pettit, Soren Welch, and Kooper Nieslon.
Both teams traveled to Mancos, CO early Saturday, October 1 to run the Chicken Creek Challenge.
A benefit of attending a small school is the ability to participate in many different extracurricular activities. It can also create conflicting schedules.
The Monticello High School Band also traveled to an event on Saturday, which resulted in only three members of the girls team and five members of the boys team running the race.
The Lady Buckaroos showed up in a big way, with Long, Burton, and Carling crossing within seconds of each other in third, fourth, and fifth.
Those running for the boys were Jesse Pettit in second, Kaden Pehrson sixth, Soren Welch 11th, Curtis Bunker 13th, and Jacob Johnson in 18th.
The Buckaroos have one last race before region and state competitions. They will be in Durango, CO this Friday, October 7.