BOZEMAN — Butte High’s cross country team finally got back on the course Thursday for a meet with Bozeman and Belgrade.
The race came after a two-week break because of a snowed-out Helena meet. It also saw some injured Bulldogs return to action, even if they are still running through injuries.
Butte High’s top girl runner, Hailey Nielson, returned to action and ran through a leg injury.
The junior finished the 5-kilometer course in 22 minutes, 5 seconds. That is well off her season-best time, but it was a step in the right direction toward competing in next week’s state meet.
Bozeman senior Alex Moore won the race in 18:52. Bozeman teammates Natalie McCormick and Ellie Hull followed at 19:35 and 19:42. Nielson placed 16th overall.
In all, the Hawks took the top 13 places en route to winning the meet with 15 points. The top seven runners from each team scored points for the varsity scores. Varsity and junior varsity was not designated before the race.
Belgrade placed second at 57. The Bulldogs took a close third at 61.
Also running for the Butte High girls were Kayla Felix (23:41), Ida Real (26:16), Kadance Dallaserra (27:22), Justice Ross (28:50) and Kayleen Noctor (33:20).
The Hawks also easily won the boys’ race with 18 points. Belgrade took second at 57, while the Bulldogs took third at 64.
Bozeman senior Griffin May won the boys’ race in 16:41, beating junior teammate Sterline Marshall-Pryed by 10 seconds. Belgrade sophomore Samuel Nash placed third in 17:27.
Senior Sean Foley led the Bulldog boys. He placed 14th with a time of 18:59, becoming the fourth different runner to lead the Butte boys this season.
Foley was one of seven Bulldogs to break 20 minutes. The others were Brady Maloughney (19:13), Damian Young (19:17), Trey Whitlock (19:26.09), Cohwen Houchin (19:27.77), J.C. Connole (19:38) and Mikey Haldane (19:59).
Also running for Butte High was Ryan Tomich (20:03.33), Grant Smith (20:03.71), Cole Hunter (21:09), Sam Byrnes (21:13), Kaden Hennessey (21:17), Riley Lubick (21:31), Daniel Harrington (21:33) and Vance Stapley (21:34).
The state meet is next Saturday at the Eagle Falls Golf Course in Great Falls.