Mustang boys cruise to team title

COLO East Marshall’s Ben Terrones is ranked among the state’s elite in Class 2A.

Though on a deep and talented squad, the senior doesn’t have to look far for an extra push.

Placing all seven varsity runners in the top-20, No. 5 ranked East Marshall prevailed in dominant fashion with 43 points in the Class B Boys division of the Nevada Invite at Hickory Grove Park Monday.

Terrones led the Mustangs with a third place tally in 17 minutes, 25 seconds as the Mustangs finished 51 points ahead of Class 1A No. 8 BCLUW. South Hamilton (125) – rated ninth in Class 1A – held off Prairie Valley by a point for third.

East Marshall’s interchangeable unit has kept competition high in both practices and meets. And as Terrones, ranked No. 29 individually, has found out on a couple occasions sometimes it’s even a different face leading the pack.

“Caleb (Benzing) and Nick (Meling) are especially doing a great job pushing me,” said Terrones, who was one of four Mustangs to place in the top-10 and one of three who have been the team’s top runner in a race this season.

“We have eight quality varsity runners and it just depends on the day. Everyone is giving their all – all the time.”

Nick Meling took sixth in 17:50, Caleb Benzing was four seconds behind in seventh and Sam Benzing added a 10th place tally in 18:29. Josh Benzing, Seth Webb and Rob Petrie swept the 17th-19th positions.

South Hardin’s Tim Rose, rated No. 18, followed up his Spartan Invite victory from Thursday with another win – covering the course in 17:06. Though he didn’t have any teammates to keep pace with near the front, Rose still had some familiar friends to run with.

“You get to know everybody because you’re running against the same guys for four years,” said Rose.

“It’s kind of like a big family.”

Zac Farrell helped the Tigers with a 14th place finish.

Runner-up Nathan Bradley of West Marshall finished nine seconds behind Rose and credited the friendly rivalry between Terrones, Rose and himself as a helpful aid in weathering the wind and an altered course.

“Overall it was a friendly, competitive race between us three,” said Bradley.

“Tim and I tried to stay as a pack and later he looked back, trying to get me to catch up with himBefore the race we always chat a bit at the starting line and give each other a hug at the finish line.”

CMB grabbed fifth with 130 points as South Hardin (146) edged West Marshall by a point for sixth.

Class 1A No. 22 ranked Cole Silver propelled the Comets to their runner-up finish, placing fifth in 17:39 and Derek Coulter was four positions back in 18:20. Ben Kuhl and Tanner Teske took 12th and 21st respectively.

Colo-NESCO’s Steven Cutler took 11th in the race to guide the Royals to ninth (208) in the 11-team field. Jordan Combes was 16th for the Royals and GMG’s Nate Hughes finished 36th.

Robert Tyynismaa sparked South Tama County to a 10th place performance (203) in the Class A division, which featured three ranked squads and seven ranked individuals. Tyynismaa tallied eighth in 17:29 and Blake Keller was 21st.

Class 2A’s top-ranked Thomas Pollard topped the field in 15:59 – 12 seconds ahead of No. 5 ranked Peter Smith of North Polk.

Class 2A No. 4 Gilbert took the team crown with 56 points, No. 2 North Polk was second with 67 and Class 3A No. 10 Grinnell finished third (73).

Not intimidated by the competition, Tyynismaa locked into his own race.

“I wasn’t really concerned about where I was at, I was focused on how I was feeling,” said Tyynismaa.

“I just kept moving up.”

Moving up will be the theme for many teams as they switch gears into October.