BELGRAE — Butte High freshman Aubree Corcoran and senior Austin Gerry finished in the top 10 Saturday at the Belgrade Invitational cross country meet.
The meet served as the season opener for the Bulldogs, and Butte High coach Guy Wadas called the small meet a big confidence booster for his Bulldogs.
“Temperatures were hot and for the first race this year, the times were hot too,” Wadas said. “The message the coaches have conveyed this year is, ‘We will train and race for each other and that everyone is important to our long term success.’ If we learn how to race, we’ll be even better. Now we have a better handle on how much to work the runners because we have a better idea of how they race.”
Corcoran ran to sixth place in her first high school meet, finishing the 5-kilometer course in 21 minutes, 34 seconds. Townsend senior Grace McDonnell won the race, crossing in 21:03.
Manhattan won the girls’ team title with 49 points. West Yellowstone was next at 58, followed by Corvallis at 83. Butte High placed fourth at 87. Townsend and Belgrade rounded out the scoring at 87 and 87.
Hailey Tonneson ran to 13th place for the Bulldogs in 22:45. Also running for Butte High were Gabby Haberman (24:09), Anna Trudnowski (24:10), Danika Murphy (24:24), Katelyn Rapp (24:32) and Rosie Real (25:10).
Gerry finished in 18:23 for 10th place in the boys’ varsity race. Townsend senior Jack Dolan won the race in 17:17.
Bulldog Erik Casagranda finished one second behind Gerry and in 11th place. Teammate Billy Cunneen, who was an offensive lineman for Butte High this time last year, placed 12th in 18:29.
Also running for the Butte High boys were Brock Martin (20:07), Sean Foley (21:01), Ryan Moore (21:06) and Clint Connors (21:26).
Manhattan won the team title with 65 points. Corvallis was second at 73, followed by Belgrade at 78, Livingston at 86, Townsend at 88 and Butte High at 95.
Butte High found success in the junior varsity races
Bulldogs Jake Vetter and Zach Carlson placed one-two in the boys’ race. Vetter finished in 18:18, while Carlson, a Butte Central transfer, crossed in 19:97.
Other Butte High JV runners were Garrett Miller (21:37), Tyler Warner (23:38), Cole Hunter (24:16), Keaton Warner (24:42), Sam Byrnes (25:09) and Grant Smith (26:42).
Hannah Jankunas of Corvallis won the girls’ JV race in 23:39.
Butte High’s Helena Schoonen ran to fifth place in 25:02, while teammate Taylor Huff took sixth in 25:17.
Bulldog Ida Real finished eight at 25:23 and Cynthia Trudgeon took 10th in 26:00. Justice Ross finished in 31:39.
The Bulldogs will run again next Saturday in Bozeman.