Huskies XC favored to win Slope, er, Region 1
Battle Mountain girls cross-country is the five-time defending regional champion, undisputed queens of the Western Slope. The question now is what are the Huskies defending?
Realignment shuffles the deck periodically, but the changes in cross-country present a brave new world. With CHSAA adjusting numbers in all sports to even out the number of teams in every class, the 4A Slope is gone.
Delta, Montezuma-Cortez, Rifle and Steamboat are all 3A, while Montrose and Durango now are in 4A Region 4. Battle Mountain, Eagle Valley, along with Summit, Palisade and Glenwood are in Region 1 with … Evergreen, Golden Green Mountain, Littleton, Mullen and Wheat Ridge.
OK, nobody in Edwards and Gypsum are sad about Durango’s departure, particularly on the boys’ side, but this is strange.
Survey says …
As luck would have it milesplit.com came out with its 4A predictions on Friday, and the Battle Mountain ladies are No. 1 in the state in the poll. As always, past performance does not guarantee future results, but there is some history behind it.
In addition to winning the Slope, the ladies have fourth, fourth third, sixth and second the last five years at the state meet. The Huskies boys came in sixth in preseason ratings, which points out an important aspect of this exercise.
The BMHS Track and XC Facebook page posted “Really? 6th??? Fellas, what say you? Consider this a massive chip on your shoulder.” The Battle Mountain boys finished third in the state last year, and are clearly the milesplit.com prediction as an insult and motivation.
Every runner and team in the state uses milesplit.com and its meet simulator for motivation throughout the season, so we can safely say the Battle Mountain girls have a bull’s eye on their collective back.
As for the Slope, er, I-70, er, Region 1, Battle Mountain’s girls and boys are the favorites, according to milesplit.com. The fun news is that the site also says the girls’ side could be a local affair with Eagle Valley challenging at the regional race at Delta — sorry, force of habit — in Grand Junction on the Anna Banana course.
A word about Eagle Valley cross-country. Yes, Battle Mountain is very good these days, but the current glory took a lot of work, and small triumphs, which led to bigger things. The Devils are on their way, and could well make some noise in 2016.
Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934, firstname.lastname@example.org and @cfreud.
Rita’s two closest peers have climbed the 8,850-meter (29,035-foot) peak 21 times each, but both of them have retired from mountain climbing.