Weiss earns third league crown; Bulldogs win both team titles
Baldwin High School’s cross country teams are back on top of the Frontier League.
A year ago, the BHS girls’ team won the league title, while the boys’ squad finished third. On Thursday, both BHS teams easily won their respective league championships at the Rim Rock Farm. The BHS boys’ team had won more than 10-straight league titles before last year’s third-place finish.
“It’s nice to win the team title,” senior Tony Weiss said. “The streak is back.”
Both Bulldog teams had comparable scores with the girls scoring 22 points and the boys 23 points. De Soto was runner-up as a team in both races with 43 and 49 points, respectively.
“We did what we needed to do today,” coach Mike Spielman said. “We came out, we got after it and got ourselves in there today. We looked relaxed and had a good time doing it. That’s what we need to do. Our scores were really low, which is always nice.”
Weiss won his third-straight league championship. He finished second his freshman year. He was the lone individual BHS winner.
“It feels pretty good,” Weiss said. “I was really happy with today’s race. I was hoping to run well and win it. I am happy with my time, and it feels great to be a three-time league champ. I love running here. It feels good to go out on a win here for the league championship. All of the fans and support here helps a lot.”
On Thursday, Weiss used the hills of the Rim Rock Farm course to his advantage as he beat De Soto’s Angel Vasquez by 21 seconds. Weiss finished the 5-kilometer course in a time of 16:24.33.
“I just think back to all of the hills we do in practice and how that pays off during the meets,” Weiss said. “The hills every week are hard, but coach knows what he is doing and it helps a lot. It was just like in practice.”
A trio of Bulldogs came in after Vasquez. They were junior Brian Wright, freshman Ethan Hartzell and junior Tosh Mihesuah. They placed third, fourth and fifth.
The next three Bulldogs also followed each other. Seniors Brandon Baltzell, Kyle Garcia and Joey LaBuda placed 10th-12th.
“All of those guys stepped up and did a great job,” Spielman said. “They all ran so well.”
On the girls’ side, Baldwin didn’t win the race individually, but did claim the next four spots. Freshman Katie Jones finished runner-up in the race, with sophomore Kaitlyn Barnes, sophomore Sienna Durr and junior Elizabeth Sigvaldson right behind her. De Soto’s Lacey Erickson won the race.
“Lacey is good, but we did a nice job of packing up right behind her,” Spielman said. “That’s been our whole goal. Staying together and making those packs is how you win the team title.”
Senior Heather Karlin was the Bulldogs’ fifth runner as she placed eighth. Junior Carol Whaley finished ninth and freshman Hannah Hutton placed 10th to round out Baldwin’s top seven runners.
“I was a little worried before the race,” Karlin said of the team title. “It’s very exciting to win, especially my senior year. It’s first on the team goals, with regionals and state next.”
Karlin was excited to be back in the Bulldogs’ top five. She battled medical issues early in the season and didn’t compete at the first four meets of the season.
“Being on the bench during the first quarter of the season made me more determined to be on the team,” Karlin said. “Getting in there and running on the team felt so good. We always have team goals, but this was a personal goal today.”
Her coach was thrilled for the lone senior on the girls’ team.
“Since she got back to running, she’s been moving up and moving up,” Spielman said. “I knew she was going to give someone a run for their money before the season was over. She did a great job today and it’s nice to see her running so well.”
The Bulldogs will next compete at the Class 4A regional meet, which will be Saturday at Wyandotte County Park. The girls will run at 4 p.m. with the boys to follow at 4:30 p.m. The Class 5A regional runs at 3 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. at the same location.
Baldwin High results
Tony Weiss, 24.33
Brian Wright, 17:09.35
Ethan Hartzell, 17:09.5
Tosh Mihesuah, 17:37.98
Brandon Baltzell, 17:53.05
Kyle Garcia, 17:56.17
Joey LaBuda, 17:59.09
Ethan Horne, 18:29.61
Carson Barnes, 19:01.79
Cory Stephens, 19:30.35
Tucker Clark, 19:36.02
Colton Horne, 19:46.91
Tim Larson, 20:05.63
Nick Waltz, 20:28.43
Clay Thomas, 20:34.42
Trent Russell, 20:35.76
Colin Thomas, 20:52.78
Acea McFarlane, 22:53.09
Katie Jones, 16:36.07
Kaitlyn Barnes, 16:41.17
Sienna Durr, 16:43.16
Elizabeth Sigvaldson, 16:50.77
Heather Karlin, 17:26.84
Carol Whaley, 17:28.34
Hannah Hutton, 17:45.41
Ashton Temple, 17:57.49
Kelsey Dighans, 18:00.79
Abi Hartzell, 18:22.05
Libby Verhaeghe, 18:34.53
Leyena Watson, 18:44.32
Brooke Randels, 19:07.09
Shelby Gregory, 19:57.16
Ally Foye, 21:04.53
Kaitlyn Christie, 22:19.34