By George Ferguson
The Havre High cross country team got more than just a race in Cut Bank on Saturday morning, they got caught in the middle of a large hailstorm during competition at the Cut Bank Time Trials.
"The weather started off really nice in the morning but the storm hit at about the two mile point, and it was golf ball sized hail coming down," Havre coach Kim Ray said. "But to my amazement all of the girls finished the race and I told all of my runners after the race that I was really impressed to see that they would have the drive and determination to go through something like that."
Because of the storm official times and places were pretty much abandoned but according to Ray, Havre's Alicia Rundquist placed fifth overall with a time of 20:52 followed by Shannon Newth in eighth place at 21:50 and Mckayla Patterson finished fourteenth at 22:05. Andree Peterson was the fourth havre runner to cross the finish line followed by Rebecca Hilliard, Katie Siebrasse and Emily Kostelecky.
"Times were a little slow due to the storm but all the girls ran really well and our top finishers are right about where they need to be," Ray said. "It will be interesting to see how the girls fair when we go back to Cut Bank in a couple of weeks."
In all 85 runners started the race and nearly all of them crossed the finish line despite the storm.
"I was just amazed at all of the girls' determination to finish that race," Ray said. "That hail was pounding on them and some of our girls had some terrible bruises on their bodies but I was so impressed that they would stay out there and keep competing."
The Ponies will travel to Belgrade on Saturday for their first official team competition of the season.