by Greg Gielczyk

Mason County Eastern’s girls and boys cross country teams ran to convincing wins at the Western Michigan D League Championships on Wednesday afternoon.

The meet was hosted by Mesick.

Paced by freshman Lucy Shoup and sophomore Olivia Wing, the Cardinal girls defeated second place Big Rapids Crossroads by a substantial 23 points, 31-54 while the boys also won easily, besting Bear Lake-Onekama by 31 points. Pentwater was third and Marion fourth.

“Kids have been doing really well in league,” Eastern coach Ben Knizacky said. “They all ran well today. Mesick has a slower course, but it’s not bad. A little bit of hills and sand.

Everybody did pretty close to what we expected out of them. They’ve been pretty much in control of the league. It was perfect weather for running today.”

Eastern won the top two spots in the boys’ race, with senior Eli Shoup reaching the finish line first in 17:27.5 while junior Nate Wing followed him in second in 17:29.4.

Also finishing in the top 10 for the Cardinals were sophomore Peter Hybza sixth in 18:58.6, sophomore Clay Shoup eighth in 19:44.0 and sophomore Matzen Dakota ninth in 19:55.8.

One kid who ran a little bit better than normal was the Manistee boy that we have, Peter (Hybza),” Knizacky said. “He ran a little bit better today. He had a good day.”

The Falcons had two other runners in the top 10, sophomore Mitchel Davis seventh in 19:17.8 and junior James Davis 10th in 19:59.3.

Bear Lake-Onekama was third, Pentwater fourth, Brethren fifth and Marion sixth in the girls race.

Eastern had the two and three spots , with freshman Lucy Shoup finishing behind Amelia Thompson of Big Rapids Crossroads in 21:33.6 while sophomore Olivia Wing was third in 22:28.8.

Other Cardinals in the top 10 included sophomore Elizabeth Logan seventh in 23:23.3, senior Sydney Gage eighth in 23:24.8. Walkerville senior Julie Sheehy was 10th in 24:02.2.

It’s been really nice to have Elizabeth,” Knizacky said. “She’s been doing good for us. Lucy Shoup is doing excellent. She’s getting a little bit more into her groove each day.”