FROM STAFF REPORTS
Boardman -- The Spartan Invitational is one of the largest cross country meets the Greenmen compete at each year, and this year's Division I girls and boys varsity races attracted more than 41 teams and about 950 runners.
The local girls turned in a stellar effort with a sixth-place finish, while the boys placed 19th.
Finishing ahead of Aurora were Twinsburg, Avon, Cleveland St. Joseph, GlenOak and Brunswick. The top two boys teams were Solon and Hudson.
Leading the girls was senior Olivia Grohe with a 13th-place finish (19:53.6), followed by her twin sister Samantha in 28th (20:40.9), Brynn Sesny 30th (20:44.7), Karsen Zabell 59th (21:12.2), Elizabeth Keller 106th (21:48.3), Madeline Schmitt 115th (21:58.3) and Katy Fellenstein 120th (22:03.1)
"Olivia and Samantha got great starts and their times continue to move in the right direction," said coach Laura Bell. "The girls made a statement, and are very hungry to make it back to regionals as last year we weren't 100 percent physically."
Leading the boys was Solomon Bibza in 66th place (17:36.5), followed by Robert Taylor 112nd (18:13.9), Connor Brown 128th (18:18.7), Donovan Boyle 133rd (18:20.5), David Meredith 170th (18:46.5), Sam Siedel 208th (19:11.1) and Matt Peluso 222nd (19:20.4).
"The boys results were impressive and we continue to move in the right direction," said Bell. "Bibza continues to be consistent and Siedel continues to work hard and drop times."
Ten girls finished in the top 100 in the open race, led by Elizabeth Barto in eighth place in 22:34.3.
"Barto earned her first official spot in the top seven on the varsity squad this week," said Bell. "Several girls posted personal bests."
She was followed by Santina Burdick, 14th in 22:48.3; Makenna Kish, 20th in 22:58.7; Kate Walton, 22nd in 22:58.9; Caroline Caputo, 26th in 23:02.4; Sophia Roberto, 29th in 23:15.5; Lexie Mehallis, 63rd in 24:03.9; Isabel Wilson, 77th in 24:18.2; Rachel Gavalier, 88th in 24:31.4; and Katherine Phillips, 91st in 24:35.7.
Dominic Felice led the Greenmen open boys in 195th place in 20:51.5.
Following him were: Jack Deptola, 24th in 21:30; Tyler Hayes, 279th in 21:35.9; Logan Adler, 284th in 21:38; Ben Young, 351st in 22:07.4; David Riley, 354th in 22:08.1; Ben Gramm, 384th in 22:24.7; Jacob Marchese, 403rd in 22:31.8; and Jonathan Hauman, 455th in 22:58.7.
"Thomas set a personal best, and Marchese, Hauman and Gramm continue to set new bests," said Bell.
"This race required a large amount of mental strength and determination. It is a big race because it is the site of the regional meet."
On Sept. 24, the Greenmen will run in the Todd Clark Invitational at Cloverleaf High near Lodi in Medina County.