DASH Middle School Cross Country 2018 Kettle Moraine Lutheran Meet Report

Hello DASH families,

The DASH middle school cross country team was up in Jackson last Wednesday to run on the Kettle Moraine Lutheran grounds for the 10th year in a row. This has become the team’s biggest meet. We would have to be at our best to score well against the other 31 teams on hand. The recent rain left the course soft, muddy, and slow. The athletes would end up plenty dirty after battling through their races.

The 2500 meter girls race was first. Grace Caspers became our leader on the low ground by the baseball diamonds. Grace ran well and placed 57th overall out of 168 girls in the race. Rebecca Anderson, Talia Kostrzewa, and Natalie Radtke all stayed close most of the way with Rebecca being the first to hit the finish, passing Talia down the homestretch. Rebecca is walking less now, and I am sure it helped having Talia around to keep her going. Talia ran a very steady race as usual, and was impressive in placing 69th overall. Natalie fell a little behind Rebecca and Talia in the muck around the soccer field, but still placed in the top half. Angela Walters ran for the first time this year, and struggled through the tough course.

We had three at the starting line in the 2500 meter boys race, but Charlie Johnson and Silas Johnson both jumped in the race just after the horn went off. Josiah Chu ran inspired and finished 18th out of 163, and if the big Slinger team did not run their whole team in this race, Josiah would have been top 10. Charlie was soon seen moving up early after starting late, and he then ran behind Ephraim until the last loop around the soccer field. It was a nice 27th place finish for Charlie. There were 42 3rd grade and under runners in this race, and 2nd grade Ephraim Radtke beat them all by over 30 seconds! That is legendary stuff, and I am not sure if Ephraim knows just how good he is running, but the coach sure does. Noah Caspers was 4th among the 42 3rd and under runners, and he had been out sick all week. These young boys of ours are fantastic. Silas Johnson gave everyone a considerable head start after trying to get his chip in his shoe before the race. He ran hard and was moving up, but the shoe with his chip was not tied tight and came off in the mud just before the finish. We shall never know his time.

The varsity girls were now ready to run their longer 3200 meter race. Julianna Caspers got off to her best start of the year and was already in 13th place when she headed down the hill for the loop by the football field. Despite going up against probably our toughest competition of the season, Julianna was still able to move up little by little until she raced down the homestretch in 9th place. After just missing last year, Julianna hit the medal stand once again. Bedalia stayed steady and strong the whole way, and gave us an important good result by finishing 27th. Julia Kowalinski and Joy Rasch pushed each other through the course with both cracking the top-40. Having four girls in the top-40 boded well for our team score. The lookout was then on for Mary LeSac. Mary handled the distance well and gave us a nice 61st place effort. The girls had had a good day. We would have to wait to see how we ended up when the points were counted. Jenna Walters ran varsity to give us a little insurance. She brought two left spikes to the meet, so she ran with one of them and took 85th. I would have liked to see Jenna’s result on a cleaner course. She has been impressive lately in practice.

Our six varsity boys then lined up to compete in a field of close to 200 athletes. This race would be crowded and fast. Nathanael Chu got out extremely fast, and was our leader most of the way. Nathanael has done well in muddy conditions before, and he was impressive again, coming in with a 21st place finish. Abiah Radtke liked the longer course, and kept Nathanael close the whole way while giving us two in the top 25. Leif Kostrzewa was a little too fast the first half of the race. He grabbed the lead for awhile, but dropped back later. He settled for 35th which was pretty good. Seka Kostrzewa gave great effort and was the eighth 5th grade and under athlete to the finish. I would have loved to see what he could have done wearing spikes. Micah Chan had a big day and liked the long course. His 67th place finish helped keep our team score low. Joshua Lipski held up pretty well in the mud and heat. He came in ahead of over 50 athletes, but I think it would have been a lot more on a cooler, drier day. The coach was happy with the boys effort.

We ended up with nine top-40 ribbons, and one top-10 medal. In a way that was expected because we have seen this team rake in the awards at a high rate before. The team scores were also very good. The boys were one of six teams that separated themselves from the others, and we ended up 5th. The girls came in 4th overall, and only behind three much bigger teams. That was a big improvement over our 9th place finish last year. I thought the team was a little off last meet, but this meet was very good. That makes four out five meets this year where this team has really shined. Now we get one more chance to see this team race, and that will be at the Homeschool Championship. I hope to see you there.

Of course, we had a big contingent at the fun run again this year. We always do. The coach has dominated the bald guy division the last few years, and now seems to have scared off all the competition. The coach slogged through the mud to a top-10 finish. It was a very tiring way to end a great day of racing. We did not get photos this time of the fun run so I don’t know too much about what happened. I do know it took me a long time to catch some girl named Charlene Radtke. We need to get her wearing some DASH yellow soon. Of course, I never did catch Ephraim.

Thanks to Mr. Beck for his help with the coaching. I see he prayed with the team when I was scrambling trying to get people to the start. Very nice. Special thanks to Debbie Anderson for her leadership in passing out and collecting the chip timers. Judy Chan also assisted. That is such an important job, and it all went very smooth. Thanks to all the parents for making the drive to Jackson for what I consider one of our big meets. Thanks to the camera lady, who had a little help from Julianna, in getting some very nice photos. You will want to check them out. Now on to our final week of racing. It is going to be fun.

Take care,
Jim Caspers

  • 2018 Cross Country

  • 2017 Cross Country

  • Track 2017

  • Cross Country 2016

  • Track 2016

  • Cross Country 2015

  • Track 2015

  • Cross Country 2013

    Midwest Homeschool Champions - 2013

  • Cross Country 2012

  • Track 2012

  • Cross Country 2011

  • Cross Country 2009

  • Cross Country 2004

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