October is here, and that means championship season for our local cross country teams. The Lyons Lions have been practicing since mid-June, and the squad of 23 runners has been developing fitness, learning how to avoid smoky days, and grown in their love and appreciation for running and each other.
The team competed at Dawson on October 1st in the Mile High League meet, and both teams managed runner-up finishes to Heritage Christian. On the boys’ side, freshman Sage Wynja led a group of three All-Conference runners with his 3rd place finish, brother Arjen Wynja finished 7th, and senior Nick Parker was 13th. Cole Thomas completed the scoring as 2A moved to an additional scoring runner this season. On the girls’ side, defending 2A state champion Quin Gregg (junior) defended her league title and earned Mile High League Outstanding Female Runner of the Year. Senior Hannah Thomas joined Gregg with 1st team All-Conference honors finishing 5th, and junior Katie Roberts finished 14th to claim 2nd team honors. Freshman Claire Lisse rounded out the scoring with an 18th place run.
The Lions hosted the 2A Regional meet on Thursday, October 8, and both teams ran well enough to qualify for the State meet in Colorado Springs on Saturday, October 17. The boys will compete at 2 p.m. and the girls at 2:45. The governor’s office limited the number of competitors this season, so instead of run 6, score 4, the team is running 5 and scoring 4 in the final meets of the season; and the state meet will be limited to 100 competitors per race, a doubling of the 50 runners allowed in each regular-season race.
For the 24th year in a row, the boys’ team made the State meet. They finished 2nd and were led by sophomore Cole Thomas’ 2nd place finish. Junior Arjen Wynja (13th) finished just ahead of brother Sage (14th), and Nick Parker (20th) rounded out the scoring. The girls finished 4th and will be competing at State for the 10th year in a row, and for the 23rd time in 25 years of Lyons’ Cross Country. Quin Gregg (5th), Hannah Thomas (6th), Claire Lisse (27th) and freshman Emma Johnson (29th) will be joined by Katie Roberts (30th) at the State meet.
The team bus departs at 9 a.m on. Saturday morning from the front of the school, and we hope to have a state send-off as has become the custom from our amazing “small and MIGHTY!” community.