The Prescott runners who earned all-conference honors celebrate with their medals. The recipients include Tyler Loucks, Ryan Zerneke, Breckin Schommer and Ella Johnson. Photo courtesy of Melissa Loucks
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Prescott boys cross country qualifies for Sectionals, girls miss the cut

On Thursday, Oct. 14, the Prescott cross country team competed in the Middle Border Conference cross country championship meet. The Prescott boys team finished in second place as a team, which qualified them for the Sections meet on Saturday, Oct. 23, at 10:30 a.m. in Rice Lake.

The Prescott boys cross country team was led by senior Tyler Loucks, who finished in second place as an individual. Senior Ryan Zerneke finished in sixth place and Breckin Schommer finished in 10th place. The only team with better top three finishers was the Osceola Chieftains, the team that won the conference championship.

In terms of total points, Osceola finished in first place with 33 points. Prescott took second with 54 points and Altoona took third with 70 points. Throughout the 2021 season, Osceola has been the gold standard for Middle Border Conference cross country. Cross country coach Matt Sachs spoke about the boys’ performance in the conference championship.

“The boys we are really happy about,” Sachs said. “We had seen Osceola quite a few times this year and figured they would be tough to beat, but we knew we had a shot at that second spot and claimed it. The boys ran extremely well and placed really well. We are so excited for them going into Sections on Saturday.”

The aforementioned runners Loucks and Zerneke both earned Middle Border Conference First-Team All-Conference honors. Ella Johnson of the Prescott girls cross country team was also selected to the First-Team All-Conference for the girls. Schommer was selected to the Second-Team All-Conference for the boys and Eric Korfhage finished just a couple of spots outside of earning second-team honors.

While the boys had a strong showing at the conference championship in Osceola, the Prescott girls couldn’t quite make the cut for Sections. Throughout the season, Sachs has spoken about nagging injuries that the girls’ roster has dealt with all year and it finally caught up to them.

“The girls dealt with a lot of nagging pains and injuries this year as a team and had quite a few girls fluctuating in and out of those varsity spots,” Sachs said of the girls’ roster. “Amery has a really strong team this year and so does Osceola, so we knew it would be tough to beat some of those teams.”

The girls’ fourth-place finish was just behind Amery, Osceola and Saint Croix Central. Despite the injuries piling up for the season, Prescott still finished ahead of Altoona, Baldwin-Woodville, Ellsworth and Somerset.

“Fourth in the conference is nothing to put our heads down about,” Sachs said. “We had a lot of improvement from all runners and are excited for some of those underclassmen getting that experience under their belt for the upcoming seasons.”

The Prescott boys will compete on Saturday at 10:30 a.m. The site of the event is listed as the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Barron County campus.

October 20, 2021