While the coronavirus has forced most competition to be close to home, the Broncs cross-country teams finally got a look at runners from the other side of the state Saturday at Rock Springs.

On the boys side, facing off with Kelly Walsh and Natrona County did not prove too much. As a team, Jackson took the title with 31 points, with Kelly Walsh second with 85.

“This was the best team race for the boys,” head coach Jeff Brazil said. “We felt they had a good chance of winning the race, but they did so in impressive fashion.”

From the jump Ben Williams and Mason Wheeler led the way, pulling away from the field together at the mile mark. Through 2 miles the Jackson duo grew their lead while the pack running by Alex Klomparens, Brandon Brazil and Juan Flores continued to stay tight.

Down the final stretch, Ben Williams pulled away for victory in 16 minutes, 33 seconds, which held across all races. With the races combined, Mason Wheeler placed third in 16:50. Klomparens finished eighth in 17:38, Brazil ninth in 17:39, Flores 10th in 17:39 and Roman Gorlaski 21st in 18:08.

On the girls side it was another case of the Broncs showing up to the starting line and claiming victory. Jackson finished with five runners in the top 10 to secure 38 points, edging second place Natrona County’s 52.

Muriel Jones got off the line to an early lead, while Kate Brigham, Parker Smith, Jacie Chatham, Sarah Tallerico, Zaidee Smith and Annika Peacock worked from the middle of the pack. At the second mile, Jones and Brigham began slowing down from the front into the chase pack, while Parker Smith and Tallerico accelerated. Coming into the finish, Smith chased down the leaders toward a fourth-place overall finish in 20:01. Tallerico was seventh in 20:19, Jones eighth in 20:40, Brigham ninth in 20:52, Chatham 10th in 21:10 and Zaidee Smith 14th in 21:41.

Those performances wrapped up regular season competition for both the Broncs sides as they now plunge into the postseason. The girls will look to keep their unbeaten streak alive as the Broncs head to the regional race in Laramie on Friday.

Contact Chance Q. Cook at 732-7065, sports@jhnewsandguide.com.

Sports Editor Chance Cook has lived in rural Pennsylvania, upstate New York and Butte, Montana. He is no stranger to spending time in the woods chasing animals. If you see him out, challenge him to a game of pool. Send tips and questions.

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