Austin Borton, a Pettisville senior, and Tanner Hostetler, a freshman, finished in the top 16 at their respective regional meets to qualify for the Division III state cross country meet, Saturday, Nov. 1 at the Scioto Downs race track in Columbus.
Both placed sixth in their respective races at the Saturday, Oct. 25, regional meet in Tiffin.
While Borton and Hostetler advanced as individuals, both Pettisville teams ended their seasons at the regional meet.
The PHS boys team placed fifth with 177 points. Elmwood captured the team title with 101, followed by Delta, 104; Hilltop, 156; and Stryker, 169.
The top four teams advanced to state competition.
Borton’s finish in 16 minutes, 33 seconds made him the top runner among area teams, placing him ahead of other Buckeye Border Conference runners, as well as Delta’s top runner.
Jim Heider of Lima Central Catholic won in 16:04.
Pettisville’s second runner across the finish line was Lincoln Frey, a junior, who took 23rd in 17:07.
Jacob Nofziger placed 33rd in 17:21. Brandon Hamilton edged out teammate Chris Matthews, finishing 83rd in 18:17. Matthews finished 84th in 18:18. Both are juniors.
Aaron Bruner, a freshman, was the sixth man for Pettisville, placing 95th in 18:31. Quinn Nofziger placed 113th in 19:11.
“The boys were disappointed not to move on as a team,” said Tom Wagner, Pettisville coach. “But they did a great job, and it was a fine ending to a great season.
“They were only eight points short of moving on to state.”
Fayette’s Darrell Randall also qualified for state. He was 10th in 16:41.
Members of the fourth-place Stryker Panthers, their places and times: 11. Kenny Graber 16:44; 35. Dillon Gansmiller 17:21; 48. Tyson Rohrs 17:37; 53. Conner Frey 17:46; 68. Jay Planson 17:58; 90. Jason Hissong 18:24; 98. Preston Aguilar 18:40.
In the girls race, Pettisville placed ninth with 233 points. Ottoville claimed the team title with 84; Liberty Benton took the runner-up spot with 126. Elmwood was third with 143; Old Fort was fourth with 144.
The Birds were the top area team, beating out Fayette and Stryker, who also qualified for regionals.
Hostetler covered the course in 19:47, the fastest time turned in by a freshman girl, to earn her sixth-place finish.
Ottoville’s Shayla Siefker took first place in 19:00.
Brady Avina finished 26th in 20:45. Rachel Beck was the third runner for Pettisville, finishing 82nd in 22:18.
Lexie King and Jackie Morrill were Pettisville’s next two runners, finishing less than one second apart on the official clock. King took 91st place with a 22:44.19 run, and Morrill was on her heels, crossing the line 92nd with a 22:44.77 time.
Taylore Lantz placed 120th in 24:49, and Kayla King came in 128th in 30:23.
“The girls did a great job” said Wagner. “Nearly all the girls ran a new personal best time, and they beat several teams that beat us at districts. They ran their hearts out, and I’m proud of them.”
Wagner was also pleased with the performances of Borton and Hostetler.
“They are peaking at the right time, and we’re looking forward to see how they’ll do down in Columbus,” he said.
Fayette’s Erica Goeltzenleuchter also qualified for state. She was 13th in 20:05.
Borton runs in the Div. III boys race at 11:05 a.m. Hostetler runs in the girls race at 1:20 p.m.