Beav runners round bend in Helena toward home meet Saturday at BGC

M.P. Regan
Wednesday, October 13, 2021

Some legs rested. Some legs seemed a bit heavier than usual. Some legs strode to their best times ever as the Beaverhead County High School cross country teams raced around the bend at the Capital City 7 of 7 last week in Helena and toward the final leg of their seasons.

“We had some good races, but some of the kids struggled a bit. Some of them worked all summer and have been racing all fall, so they might be a bit worn out,” said BCJS Head Coach Betty Iverson of her runners performances at the annual event that she held some of her top runners out of in the name of rest.

“And that is not an easy course. It has lots of rolling hills,” said Iverson of the undulating tract set up on the Bill Roberts Golf Course.

“It starts with a long, gradual uphill, and it’s a two-loop course, so the runners know they will be coming back to take on that long, gradual uphill again,” said Iverson of the 5000m course that ends with a long, gradual downhill that burdens different muscles in tired legs.

“And it’s a long day, too— seven varsity and two JV races,” said Iverson of the meet that creates separate races for runners, based on their rankings within their teams.

“It was a long ride to get up there, and then the meet took more than four hours,” said Iverson of an event that this year attracted competitors representing more than 40 schools—from Class AA to Class C.

Still, the Beavs got personal best efforts from four of their runners— Laura Martin, Bryce Hooper, Abbi Lemelin and Ava Graham.

“Most of our kids did well. A few were disappointed. But it’s been a long season,” noted Iverson.

“Though they’ll be ready for this weekend.”

Next up for the Beavs, the annual Western A Classic, which they will host this year at Bea verhead Golf Course in Dillon on Saturday, Oct. 16, starting at 2 p.m.

“It’s not a qualifier for the state meet, just another meet really,” said Iverson of event that will bring all the A teams from the west side of the state to Dillon this weekend.

“But we’ve got the strongest conference by far,” said Iverson of the Western A Conference she sees as far superior this year to its counterpart, the Eastern A Conference.

“Besides Hardin, you will see all the top A teams in the state here on Saturday,” said Iverson of an event that will include performances by the BCHS Pep Band and Teen Tones.

“We hope it won’t still be snowy. They’ve run in snow before,” said Iverson of her hardy runners’, now in their final preparations for their regular season finale and the subsequent Montana High School Association State Cross Country Meet in Missoula on Oct. 23.

“But hopefully they won’t have to on Saturday.”