A copy of the ARTICLE from the LEADER TELEGRAM from OCTOBER 8, 2008
I linked this article a few days ago, but I wanted a copy here in the blog so I could have it later for some journaling. I bought the newspaper too. Can't have enough of that kind of stuff!
So here is the article as it appeared online a few days ago.
Inside Cross Country: Ramblers boys enjoying success
By Travis Mester
It looks like the Eau Claire Regis boys cross country team has been taking notes.
Over the past four years it has been easy for this Ramblers bunch to be overshadowed by the Regis girls team, which placed seventh at the WIAA cross country state meet in 2006 and fourth a year ago.
But not this season, as the boys have put together their most successful campaign under coach John Snyder since 2003.
Led by seniors Brian Farley, Nick Johnson, Josh Kassing and David Connell, Regis won both the Warrior and Ladysmith Invitationals in the past month and looks primed for a tournament run in the near future.
Snyder is excited that his boys team is being able to find the same successes that the girls have had in the past.
"In cross country boys tend to get better as time goes on," Snyder said. "I think my four senior runners have matured very nicely and we've added some younger runners too."
Farley has led the Ramblers with a second-place individual finish at the Warrior Invite as well as a third-place finish at Ladysmith last week. A senior this season, he has returned stronger than ever from a knee injury that hindered him at the end of last year.
As for the younger Ramblers, freshman Nick Wagner and sophomore Kevin Mathiowetz have shown the most improvement.
Since the beginning of the year Wagner - the nephew of Joel Wagner, one of Snyder's previous athletes and the last Ramblers boys cross country conference champion 20 years ago - has improved his personal time by nearly a minute.
"(Nick) was so inexperienced because in eighth grade he was such a talent that he wasn't challenged," Snyder said. "But in high school he's learned early on that the competition is much better."
According to Snyder, the strength of this year's Regis team has been its balance and the fact that in an individual sport, like cross country, it has been able to work together to find success.
Regis has never won a conference title in boys cross country and Snyder says that ending that drought has become motivation for this year's squad.
"(Our boys) just haven't had this kind of success before," Snyder said. "We had a good feeling coming in to this season and we'd love to compete in the Cloverbelt and make it to state as a team."