Archive for September, 2011

Hello DASH families,

Our high school cross country team took the field in beautiful Armstrong Park in Racine last Thursday. The athletes scouted the course in gorgeous weather, but suddenly dark clouds began to roll in. It couldn’t be a repeat of last Saturday when the varsity runners were rained out, could it?  Lightning was seen, and the race was delayed for half an hour. However, this time the show would go on.

Emily Caspers and Kristin Ulfeng both ran out fast on the downhill start with the wind on their backs. Soon, they found the going a little harder bucking the wind on their way back up the hillly course. But Emily and Kristin paced themselves very well, leading them both to some good times at the finish. Kristin was particularly impressive, cutting off over two minutes from her last race. She is really looking good.

Zeb Caspers and Caleb Caucutt toed the line for the DASH team in the boys race. Caleb did his best to keep up with Zeb like he did last Saturday.  Zeb was caught looking back a few times to check on Caleb’s whereabouts. In the end, Zeb stayed too strong, pushing himself to the finish for a good race. Caleb was really tested coming down the final hill, running stride for stride with another athlete. He fell behind, but reached back for a little extra to pass him back up, and beat him to the finish line. It was a nice way to end another day of DASH racing.

Thanks for all the DASH fans who came out to see the athletes. It is a great course for spectators to watch a race, and the DASH fans were everywhere following the action. Of course, we got a lot of great pictures. Only two more races left for the high school team. The season is going so fast.

Take care,
Jim Caspers

Hello DASH families,

The middle school team ran in the Tosa Invite this past Wednesday at the familiar surroundings of Greenfield Park. The rain let up before the racing began, but the course was left muddy for this huge 44-team event. It was a long day with six separate races, but the team held up well and we posted our usual impressive results.

DASH stars Lucretia Nyhart and Faith Caspers got off to good starts in their 6th and under girls race. They battled among the leaders the whole way, settling for 12th and 17th place finishes in the end. If not for some girls cutting the course short, their results would have been even better. Lilly Rogowski, sporting new running shoes, had her best race of the year. She finished in the top third; not bad for a third grader! Kayla Walters had another good day cracking the top-100. (Out of over 250). Mia Wickman got a little dirty in her race with a fall, but got up to complete her best race of the year. Alivia Kempf, with her father getting to the race just in time, made it to the finish to complete our team.

Aaron Rogowski paced the boys in the 6th and under race. Aaron ran fast from the start to crack in to the top-100 with a 62nd place finish. Daniel Caspers showed off his nice stride to come in next, while Joshua LeSac showed us his determination at the end as usual in a nice showing. All these boys are young and will be back in the same race next year.

Zipporah Caspers was our respresentative in the 7th grade race. She got out fast and held her place throughout. She always runs sure and steady, and this race was no exception. Her efforts paid off for a nice 22nd place finish.

The boys 7th grade race started early, so early that everyone was watching Zipporah run to the finish when the gun went off. Ransom Nyhart and another athlete immediately sprinted out and broke away from the pack, and were involved in a great duel throughout. Ransom stayed close behind throughout, and caught up just before the home stretch, but the other kid’s kick proved too strong and Ransom had to settle for the 2nd place medal. Christian LeSac had one of his great days as well, holding off a mob behind him at the end to capture the 10th place medal. Two in the top-10 at this big meet is amazing! Glenn Kabosky and Isaiah Rogowski gave us two more great finishes, both finishing in the top-100. Danny Wickman struggled on this long course, but made it to the finish line to cap off a great race.

Sarah Klapak and Amy Osinga joined the DASH girls for the first time this year to really give us an exciting field in the 8th grade race. Andrea Kempf and Sarah stayed together among the leaders throughout the race, and both cracked the top-10 to earn medals, and that was with Sarah taking a wrong turn coming out of the woods. Andrea Beck was not far behind giving us an impressive 20th place finish. She is getting faster with each race. Amy Osinga bided her time throughout the race. She came to the finish in a big pack of girls and outkicked them all for a 40th place finish. Amelie Kemmann, coming back from sickness, got a sideache and just did not have it on this day. She should be better soon. Renee Walters did not like the way her shoes felt in the woods, so she took them off and ran barefoot the rest of the way. She was really flying at the finish. These girls had some mishaps, but their results were impressive.

Matthew LeSac ran with the 8th grade boys. He ran fast as always and cracked the top-40. It was not his best race of the year, but a race that the 100+ kids behind him would have liked to have run.

We had our full team for the first time and it was exciting. Four top-10 finishes in the biggest race of the year is just so good. Ten athletes in the top-40 is amazing. We are getting these kinds of results in each race. Is this becoming routine? Yes, a little, and that is part of what makes this team special. The season will be over in a few weeks so we have to enjoy it while we can.

Thanks to Mary Beck and Kenli Coupee for helping with timing. Thanks to my wife for the usual great photos. Thanks to the 7th grade boys for making it to the start and running great without me even paying attention to them. Thanks for all the DASH fans, especially those who ran around with me to catch the action. With six races it was tiring, but so much fun.

Take care,
Jim Caspers

Hello DASH families,

The DASH high school cross country team was joined by the Homeschool Eagles and the Holy Family Warriors yesterday at Mitchell Park for a meet hosted by Bradley Tech. We had 18 athletes ready to run on a fast course. The forecast called for a break in the rain long enough to get the meet completed, but there were enough dark clouds around to keeps us feeling a little uneasy about the weather.

We were running all the girls in the varsity race, so the JV boys team got the DASH team started. Zeb Caspers got out to a good start, with Caleb Caucutt keeping Zeb in his sights throughout the race. Zeb and Caleb’s efforts were good enough to place them in the top-20, which earned them some nice numbered ribbons. Caleb had not raced with the DASH team since 2006, but was talked into joining the team for this race. Hopefully, we will see him again before the season is out. Matthew Wundrow raced a very steady race until the end when he showed us a very impressive kick. Matthew is really improving from race to race and it will be fun to see how fast he will be by the end of the season. Ben Yanke wore DASH yellow for the first time and ran well to be our fourth runner in, and Peter Cummings, running happy as always, completed our JV team. Yes, we had a full JV team. That was nice.

The Varsity girls lined up next. With just a few minutes until race time, lightning flashed. That put the race off for at least a half hour. The team ran for cover, but it was not long before more lightning came and the race was called off. How very disappointing it was, especially since the Eagles and Warriors had long drives to get to the race.

Unfortunately the Warriors had to go because of another commitment, but the Eagles stayed and raced the first mile of the course with the DASH team in the rain. Everyone had an opportunity to participate, from race winner Kenny Hillman to 4-year-old Julianna Caspers. It was so much fun, that the athletes turned around and ran the mile course the other direction back to the start. The weather did not cooperate for the varsity runners, but at least we got a good race in. It definitely helped to put us in a happier mood as we left. Another day of DASH racing was in the books. Rain or shine, it is always fun.

Thanks to Carolyn Skalsky for bringing a much needed pop-up tent, and for making the drive to the domes. Thanks to Jilleen Pfarr and Drew Heiss for getting everyone to run the mile races and leaving us with a more positive tone for the day. Thanks to my wife for taking the team pictures. I hope we can get all these teams together again sometime. Until then,

Take care,
Jim Caspers

Hello DASH families,

The DASH middle school team raced in Mukwonago for the first time yesterday. Ten teams took the field. The weather was perfect, the course was short and fast, and best of all, our results were dazzling.

Our 7th and under girls team set the tone for the day with some early inspired running. Lucretia Nyhart hung behind the leaders through the first two laps, biding her time to make a move. In the end she made a charge to the finish line, leaving many behind and almost pulled out a DASH victory, before settling for a 2nd place finish. The great racing did not end there. Zipporah Caspers showed her experience in an impressive, well-paced 7th place showing. Faith Caspers fell down early, but managed to still break into the top-10, and Lilly Rogowski kept up a fast pace from start to finish for a great 43rd place result. After we got Kayla Walters to the starting line and racing, she was all smiles as this photo proves, running great again. Mia Wickman also fell at the start, but had a good showing. She keeps getting better with each race. And Alivia Kempf put on a DASH jersey for the first time and showed us loads of potential, leaving us wanting to see her run again.

The 7th and under boys could hardly wait to get going in their race. Ransom Nyhart broke to the front of the pack at the start, increased his lead throughout, and never let up, giving the DASH team its first victory of the season. Christian LeSac was blazing in his last lap, which moved him up considerably for a fantastic 7th place finish. Glenn Kaboskey was back racing. He got out fast, and held on for an impressive 22nd place finish. Right behind was Isaiah Rogowski. His running form has gotten so good, he made his 27th place finish look easy. Aaron Rogowski ran with his usual determination to finish next in 28th. Daniel Caspers looked little, but ran big in the end for a great finish. Danny Wickman and Joshua LeSac both worked hard in their races to complete are great boys team.

The 8th grade girls were running short, so great individual performances were in order. Andrea Kempf and Andrea Beck both hovered just behind the leaders early. Andrea Kempf put on an amazing last lap, cruising by the leaders late with a some exceptional kick to give the DASH team another victory! Andrea Beck was not far behind, cracking the top-10 for the first time this year. Renee Walters was going great until tiring in the end, reminding the coach to run the athletes hard at the next practice.

Matthew LeSac was our entry in the boys 8th grade race. He had a great start, but fell back a little as the race got going. It turns out a bee stung his foot on the second loop. It did not slow him for long though as he fought back for a top-10 finish of his own. He actually received the 11th place card, because he was put in the wrong place in line. Another great race by Matthew nonetheless.

Two first place finishes, one second, eight in the top-10, and three more in the 20’s! There were about 400 athletes racing. To say we had a good day is an understatement. Cheering Lucretia, Ransom, and Andrea Kempf at the award ceremony was a great way to put a stamp on the day.

Thanks to Mary Beck for taking the times at the finish again. She earns another mention in the Blog. Thanks to those who took pictures. My wife gets most of the credit there. Thanks for the great DASH fans giving us the biggest cheering section at the awards ceremony. That’s what makes the DASH team so much fun.

Take care,
Jim Caspers

Hello DASH families,

The DASH high school team was back at Franklin High School to compete in the Franklin Saber Invitational. We brought a very small team this year, but the day was beautiful, and the athletes put up good times.

The girls team ran first. Emily Caspers set a good pace at the start that she was able to maintain, leading her to a respectable 20:37 finish. That is almost three minutes faster than her first race. Kristin Ulfeng was equally impressive. She ran a smart race, staying right on schedule the whole way, and was also able to cut off almost three minutes from her first race time. The improvement of the girls is very encouraging for the rest of the season.

The boys lined up next. Zachary Marek and Zeb Caspers were running close the whole way. Zachary moved ahead before the first mile, but Zeb kept him in his sights. Zachary stayed strong throughout, putting up his best race of the year, and the best race he has had on this course. Zeb was keeping up well when, at about the 2 mile mark, the officials inexplicably stopped him. They thought he had cut the course and made him go back and run a loop over again. That probably added three minutes to his time. Zeb ran well, but the time he received does not reflect it. Next week he will get another chance.

Our field was small, but everyone ran hard, and fun was had by all as the photos prove. Next week we will be joined again by the Homeschool Eagles giving us a bigger team. Big or small, it is good to be out racing with the DASH team.

Take care,
Jim Caspers

Hello DASH families,

The middle school cross country team was back in action after a day off this past Wednesday, running at scenic Grant Park. We enjoyed some success at our first meet at Lake Denoon, but I did not feel the team had reached its potential. As the coach I watch this team closely, I run with the dedicated athletes, and I know how good this team can be. Frankly, I was looking for a little more on this cool, majestic day. Let’s just say the team didn’t let me down. The accomplishments achieved on this day were absolutely stunning, and what made it even more special is that they happened in every race!

The 7th and under girls set the tone early. Lucretia Nyhart, Faith Caspers, and Zipporah Caspers were among the leaders from the start. They never let up, running hard throughout the 3k course, as their amazing results prove. Lucretia captured the 5th place medal; Faith, on her favorite course, was right behind for the 8th place medal (Was she the top 5th grader? I wish I knew.); and moments later Zipporah hit the finish line in 18th place. Yet there were still 240 athletes out on the course. Kayla Walters was one of them, running an inspired race to keep our team score down. Lilly Rogowski came on strong at the end to finish right behind Kayla. These young girls can run! Mia Wickman improved greatly from her first race to cap off this memorable race.

The girls results were shown to the 7th and under boys team before their race. The boys knew it was their turn. Ransom Nyhart took up the challenge with another, almost routine, second place finish. Ransom makes it look too easy. Christian LeSac, with his shoes tied tight (story behind shoes), made up for lost time by running with the leaders throughout to earn the 7th place medal. Yes, the team already had four top-8 finishes! It was turning into a special day. Isaiah Rogowski was pushed even harder this time by his brother Aaron Rogowski. Isaiah moved up to an impressive 56th place finish this race, with Aaron right behind for 57th. Aaron just never lets up.  Keep your eye on him. Isaiah and Aaron are both getting really fast. Daniel Caspers fought to the end and finished in the top half, not bad for a 3rd grader. Danny Wickman improved greatly from his first race, showing us signs of how he can compete. Future star Joshua LeSac worked hard in this long race to complete our team.

The 8th grade girls almost did not have a team. We took pictures, said the team prayer, and then Amelie Kemmann arrived on the scene with just a few minutes to spare. (We had just prayed for this to happen!) Amelie brought Andrea Beck’s shoes along, so we got to start the race with four girls, all wearing their own shoes! The girls got off to a great start. Andrea Kempf showed that her top-10 finish of two days before was no fluke, as she paced herself to the 6th place medal this time. Andrea Beck was a little healthier this time out, and ran to a hard-fought 13 place. Amelie Kemmann passed many down the home stretch, as usual, for a good finish, and Renee Walters looked much improved in her second race.

The racing was far from over. We still had DASH star Matthew LeSac running in the 8th grade boys race. This race was particularly competitive with the leaders setting a relentless pace. Matthew stayed right there with the leaders to the end, ending up in 15th place. His time was a team-best 11:11. Looking back at past DASH results, you will see that no one has ever posted a time so low at the 3k distance. That is the way to cap off a day of racing. The extra laps Matthew puts in at practice are paying off.

Five top-8 finishes. Eight top-18 finishes. We only ran 18 athletes, three of who were 3rd graders. This is a team that is running to its potential. What more can a coach ask? Hmmm, I know. Let’s do it again next time. That was fun!

Thanks to Mary Beck again for volunteering to mark down the times again at the finish line. Thanks to the photographers who took so many great pictures.  Thanks to the athletes who made it so worthwhile running all over the park to catch the action. The races will be coming up fast.  The season will be over before you know it, so let’s enjoy it while we can.

Take care,
Jim Caspers

Hello DASH families,

Our middle school team was back at Muskego Lake Denoon to start the season. This year the meet had more teams than ever, and we got to run on a new course, but that could not stop us from posting some good results.

We had six girls toe the line in the 7th grade and under race. The three DASH veterans in the field all had good starts to pace this team. Lucretia Nyhart was especially good on this day, staying strong the whole way to capture the 7th place medal. Zipporah Caspers stayed near the leaders as well to finish 27th, and Faith Caspers effort was good for 47th. But you need four to make a team, so we needed one of our three newcomers to step up. Lilly Rogowski and Kayla Walters did just that, each running hard the whole way. This is the kind of racing that gets the coach extra excited about the coming season. Lilly and Kayla both finished in the top 90, and that is out of 291 athletes in the race! Mia Wickman learned that cross country racing is never easy, having to backtrack to pick up a shoe. She also has talent and will be heard from later in the year.

Ransom Nyhart showed his mettle with a second place finish in the 7th and under boys race. With the big schools we raced against, this is one of the great DASH races ever. Christian LeSac was very fast as usual to finish 23rd, and Glenn Kaboskey put up a great time to finish 63rd. Isaiah Rogowski paced his brother Aaron to the finish, both having outstanding first races. Daniel Caspers was back giving his all racing with the big boys, and Joshua LeSac got everyone talking about his strong finish. Danny Wickman was right behind Joshua to complete the DASH boys team.

Andrea Kempf is a new DASH star. She set the pace for the 8th grade girls, leading them with a medal-winning 5th place finish. Amelie Kemmann, in her first race, placed herself behind an ailing Andrea Beck until she used her amazing kick at the end to move up to a 38th place finish. Andrea Beck was right behind for 42nd. Renee Walters struggled in her first cross country race. Look for her to move up as she gains experience.

Matthew LeSac had box 2 all to himself in the 8th grade boys race. He made the most of it, posting a great time for 23rd place to complete a great day of DASH racing.

The legendary DASH fans were peerless once again at the award ceremony, showing their appreciation for the efforts of Ransom Nyhart and Andrea Kempf when they were awarded their top-5 medals. Another great day of DASH racing is now in the books. We had fun as these photos can attest. The middle school team has a full schedule coming up. You won’t want to miss it.

Special thanks to Mary Beck who was nabbed to be our official results recorder.  Thanks for everyone else who helped out, and to the many DASH fans who lined the course and stayed to the end to cheer on the athletes. It makes you proud to be a part of the DASH team!

Take care,
Jim Caspers

Hello DASH families,

The DASH high school cross country team joined with the Homeschool Eagles team again at a meet in Whitewater this past Friday. It was a new course for the DASH team, and we got to run it wearing green Eagles uniforms.

The girls started us off, and we got to cheer them a little longer than usual as they had to run a full 5k course. Jalene Vegter finished strong while leading the girls in her first race of the year. Our own Emily Caspers was next followed again by Sarah Pfeiffle. Freshman Kaitlyn Hillman and Sophomore Heidi Jacobsen rounded out the girls scorers. Leah Kasprzak was next followed by Siobhan Heiss, who put on a surge at the end passing Emily McIntyre and our own Kristin Ulfeng. This team is young and inexperienced, but is working hard and will keep getting better the season progresses.

Kenny Hillman had another great day finishing fourth overall in the boys race. His younger brother Kyle Hillman finished strong in his first race of the year. We will have to keep on this kid. Patrick Cummings ran a very smart race, moving up in the last mile to finish third on the team. DASH newcomer Daniel Kordik, running in his first race one day after joining the team, looked strong throughout in a great first race, and Aaron Vogel had another good run to complete the team scoring. Zeb Caspers struggled late but lowered his time by over a minute from his first race. Matthew Wundrow especially enjoyed his first race smiling throughout. He was followed by big Peter Cummings. Peter gave his all and made it to the finish line.

It has been so nice to be able to race with the Eagles this year. Special thanks to Jilleen Pfarr for all the work she has put in to get her team started. Thanks to all the Eagles fans who came out and cheered the athletes on. It was not too bad wearing green. We get to do it again later in the year, but the next three meets we will be back to wearing our familiar yellow. I hope to see you there. Until then…

Take care,
Jim Caspers

  • 2018 Cross Country

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  • Cross Country 2013

    Midwest Homeschool Champions - 2013

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  • Cross Country 2004

    Legendary race - Maitland Park This is where it all began.