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ALTON - The new on-campus cross country course at Alton High School had its grand opening on Wednesday in the inaugural running of the Alton Invitational meet, and if the first meet is any indication, the newest course in the area is going to become one of the best.

The course opened on a very positive note, as the Redbirds won the boys' race, with 31 points, with Collinsville placing second with 42 points and Granite City coming in third with 58 points. Jersey, Marquette Catholic, Maryville Christian, and McCluer North from Florissant, Mo. also entered runners but didn't record a team score.

Things couldn't have gone any better for the first day on the new course, and Redbird head coach Tammy Tolbert was very pleased with both how the day turned out and how her teams performed.

"It was a really nice day as far as the first meet on the new course," Tolbert said. "It turned really nice, and we really weren't sure what to expect. Overall, I thought our runners did really well today. We've had a really good season we have put some really good work in, and we've got a good mixture of younger runners and experienced upperclassmen."

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The new course will make things much easier for the Alton runners now and in the future, and the course has opened with some very positive feedback that will help make it a go-to spot down the road.

The Kahoks' Trey Peterson won the first-ever boys race on the course with a time of 16:31.41, with Thomas Westbrook of the Warriors second at 16:48.44. Cole Martinez of the Panthers came in third at 16:54.55, while the Redbirds' Dylan Forsythe was fourth at 17:12.63, Collinsville's Andrew Gonski was fifth at 17:13.38, Alton's Simon McClaine was sixth with a time of 17:26.32, Jersey's Griffin Williams was seventh at 17:33.03, in eighth place was River Wrishnik of the Redbirds at 17:43.22, Collinsville's Brock Cunningham was ninth at 17:48.72 and Alton's Alex Macias rounded out the top ten with a time of 17:58.49.

In addition to the first four runners, Alton had Victor Humphrey in at 17:59.90, Noah Gallivan was clocked in 18:12.15 and Lucas Landuyt came in at 18:25.18.

The Kahoks' other runners were Evan Heintz, who was timed in 18:31.71, Alejandro Mendoza, who came in at 19:26.89, Dylan Meek, who had a time of 21:21.37 and Laurentino Martinez, whose time was 21:22.53.

In addition to Westbrook, the Warriors had Sam Yeager in at 18:22.47, Aiden Harris was clocked in 18:29.21, Daniel Wilson was in at 19:03.72, Breden Rayl's time was 19:52.85, Leighton Cohea had a time of 19:53.23 and Ethan Beatty was in at 20:20.23.

In the other individuals, Josh Krietner of Marquette had a time of 21:33.35, Jared Ury of Maryville was in at 22:23.26, Drake Wilson of the Panthers was timed in 23:02.24, and teammate Eli Hetzel's time was 26:38.57. Also, McCluer North's Kylan Abbafe was in at 26:36.86.

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