By Mark Ruschau
COLDWATER -- The number one state-ranked Minster Wildcats cross country team continued domination of the team title was the highlight of the 21st Midwest Athletic Conference meet Thursday afternoon at Memorial Park and Cavalier Stadium.
Minster won the title with just 24 points, placing two of the top three runners and six of the top 10 and seven of the top 20.
Versailles was second with 57 points, Coldwater was third with 94.
The title was the Wildcats 11th consecutive title and 21st overall.
Leading the way for the Wildcats was freshman Bernadette Burke, who posted a winning time of 19:07 over the 5,000-meter course which was 12 seconds faster then runner-up Kristin Smith of Versailles. Placing third for Minster was junior Brigitte Sherman. Rounding out the top five were Ashley Kanney of Coldwater and Lauren Fausey of Minster. The rest of the top 10 and all conference team included Katie Dahlinghaus and Jenna Fausey of Minster, Mary Prakel of Versailles, Erin Cavalage of St. John's and Tasha Stucke of Coldwater.
"The girls ran really well today," said Minster coach Jessie Magoto. "We had six girls that made all conference. Bernadette Burke is a freshman and won the race, all the girls ran really well I was really pleased."
"We had strong performances today but the times were not the best we have run this year," continued Magoto. "Off the performances today I think we are ready for a change, I think we are ready for post season competition."
"Minster just has a really strong program and it is great to run against them,"said Versailles coach Mark Pleiman. "They are a a gauge for us, they are number one in the state and they are the team to beat. By running against them it makes us better. Are we going to be able to catch them? I don't know, but it is going to be darn hard."
One of the little known Midwest Athletic Conference semi-dynasties continued on the boys side of the meet as Coldwater won their ninth team title in 31 years, which is five more than any other team in the conference and more than any other two teams in the conference combined. The win was also the Cavaliers third in six years.
Coldwater placed four runners in the top 10 and five in the top 12 for a score of 30. Versailles, which last year's team title was a distant second with 75 points. (Continued from page 1B)
New Bremen was third and St. Henry was fourth.
Leading the way for the Cavaliers, as he has for the past three years, was senior David Wilker who won with a time of 16:22 which was 35 second faster then runner-up Jamie Kuess.
Rounding out the top ten and named to the all conference team were Kenny Platfoot and Dusty Kuess of Coldwater, Casey Heckman of Minster, Eric Wood of Versailles, Jason Dammeyer of New Bremen, Justin Guysick of Marion Local and Sam Wierwille of New Knoxville.
"Our boys did just did tremendous tonight," said Coldwater coach Pete Lisi. "This is the seniors team and I really can not be more proud of them. Before practice the other night, the seniors took the team aside and talked about how important this meet was and they must of said something because the team came out and did the job tonight.'
"We had a great one-two right out of the shoot in David and Jamie. David and Jamie are both seniors, David of course is a three time defending league champion. Jamie really wanted to finish in that second spot tonight, I think of the top ten three or four of them beat him last week at the Lions. It was really great to see him as a senior, do what he did tonight.'
"Our guys had really good run tonight and we really needed it badly," said Pleiman. "We have ran against a lot of these teams all season long and the last couple of weeks we have been the odd team out in meets and it was nice to see them perform well today.
"We had nice group of seniors come through today,"continued Pleiman. 'We are coming around right now and we are shooting for the state meet and it is all going to depend on which team shows up in the next couple of weeks."
Every MAC team except Versailles and Coldwater travels to Spencerville next Saturday for the Division III District meet. Versailles will have their district at the Miami Valley Career Technical Center in Vandalia. Coldwater travels to Ottawa-Glandorf for the Division III meet.