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Father McGivney Cross Country Coach Suzy BushurEDWARDSVILLE – Father McGivney Catholic’s boys cross country team appears primed for strong run the rest of the season.

Father McGivney Catholic's boys cross-country team had a top-10 finish on Aug. 26 as the Griffin boys finished fourth in Metro East Lutheran First to the Finish meet at SIU-Edwardsville's Mud Mountain course.

The Griffins finished behind Mascoutah (110 points), Freeburg (128) and Cape Girardeau (Mo.) Notre Dame (198), with McGivney scoring 205 points, enough to finish ahead of Pickneyville (225) on the day. The second five schools were Columbia (255), Breese Mater Dei (263), Farmington, Mo. (294), Nashville (304) and Steeleville (309). Piasa Southwestern took 34th at 928 points and MEL was 37th at 1,006 points, with Marquette Catholic and Carrollton runners competing as individuals.

Marquette Catholic, Carrollton and McGivney had runners taking part as individuals.

Ross Bushur

Ross Bushur finished eighth in the First to the Finish race individual standings, covering the five-kilometer (3.1 mile) course in 16:56.20, with Tyler Guthrie (24th 18:04.60), Zach Brasel (76th in18:42.30), Tanner Fox (137th in 19:07.00) and Diego Pacheco (205th in 19:18.40) rounding out the Griffins' scoring runners; Grant Seniker finished 67th in 19:16.90 for the Piasa Birds' top finish on the day, while the Knights' Josh Jacobsen was 138th in 20:49.10, Marquette's Cole DeClue took 179th and finished in 21:11.00, while the Hawks' Seth Howard covered the course in 20:49.10 for a 159th-place finish on the day.

Father McGivney head cross country coach Suzy Bushur said she was glad to see her boys in the top four, but honestly thought without a slight injury to her son, Ross, the team would have placed higher.

“Ross purchased some brand new spikes and was wearing them and he ended up with a bone bruise and two blood blisters,” she said. “He felt great and was leading the race in the beginning and then this bothered him. He ended up eighth with a time of 16:56.”

Coach Bushur said she knows she has a young team, but she believes as the season progresses, they will only become more competitive.

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“We will work on things and get better,” she said. “It was a good way to start the season. Now we know what we can do. From here on we keep getting better. We ended up fourth, but honestly we could have gotten third, we were only seven points. It hurt us when Ross was injured, but we will be back.”

On the girls side at the First to the Finish Meet, MEL's Kate Muravjova was their top runner of the day with a time of 27:54.00, good for 146th place on the day; Marquette was led by Riley Vickrey finished in 21st place and finished in a time of 22:06.10; Carrollton's Lily Baumgartner took 45th place and covered the course in 23:17.10 and McGivney's Mira McAtee finished in 26:37.10, good for 158th place.

St. Teresa's Jackson Stewart (16:29.00) and Staunton's Lydia Roller (19:53.90) took the individual titles on the day.

McGivney competes at Granite City Invite

McGivney Catholic couldn't field a full varsity team for the Granite City Invitational this past Saturday, so Griffin coach Suzy Bushur had her teams focus on personal records for her runners.

“We didn't have our full team together and we went for (PRs) for everybody,” Bushur said. “We just went out and ran the best we could; the kids did great – they all love the team experience and they were cheering for each other and they had that opportunity today.

“I'm proud of all the teamwork and all the growth and improvements we're seeing. We want to grow from here as a team and in their running.”

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