SENIOR’S SHOW: Brown captures his first individual title at West Marshall Invitational

No. 9 Hawk boys runaway team champs

South Hamilton senior Josiah Brown pushes the pace as he heads down the homestretch at Lincoln Valley Golf Course in State Center Tuesday evening. His late surge earned him his first career cross country victory at the West Marshall Invite and the ninth-ranked (Class 2A) Hawks went home with the team title. DFJ photo/Troy Banning

STATE CENTER — Logan Peters could hear the footsteps. Actually, it was the guttural sounds that went along with the footsteps, but he knew teammate Josiah Brown was breathing down his neck as the two climbed the final steep hill at Lincoln Valley Golf Course Tuesday evening.

“He always does this weird breathing sound, so we know when he’s coming,” Peters said of his senior teammate. “So, yeah, I definitely heard him.”

Brown, who methodically kept Peters and BCLUW’s Caleb Silver in his sights throughout the race, put his grand plan into action with roughly 1,200 meters to go and flew by both on his way to his first career individual cross country victory at the West Marshall Invitational.

Ninth-ranked (Class 2A) South Hamilton dominated the team competition and went home with the championship after posting just 32 points. West Marshall (94 points), BCLUW (96) and Baxter (98) were left to fight it out for the runner-up spot.

Brown, ranked 22nd (Class 2A), unseated Peters as the meet champion by finding an extra gear down the final straightaway. He passed Peters before the leaders made the final turn for home and then took out Silver with 400 meters remaining.

South Hamilton veterans Logan Peters (left) and Quinton Grove (right) aid freshman Ty Skartvedt (center) following the boys’ 5K race at Tuesday’s West Marshall Invitational in State Center. DFJ photo/Troy Banning

“It feels pretty good because it’s my last year,” Brown said as he attempted to catch his breath after finishing the 5K race in 17:33.36, five seconds clear of Silver (17:38.71) who took, well, the silver. “At the end, I just tried to kick it in. I’m a lot taller than (Silver), so I have longer strides, but it’s always hard to tell.”

Peters, who utilized his standard strategy of pushing the pace early, led for more than two miles before Silver was able to reel him in. Eventually, on the final hill, Brown passed him as well.

Peters was comfortably in third as he cruised down the homestretch. He finished in 17:43.03 and then immediately found Brown to congratulate him on the gold-medal run.

“It’s his senior year, so to get one here is pretty special,” Peters, the meet’s 2016 champion, said of Brown. “He trained hard all summer and ran during the hottest part of the day, so that’s what prepared him for (Tuesday).”

Despite pulling the field around the course for the majority of the race, Peters was content with his performance in the windy conditions on a course that isn’t easy by any stretch of the imagination.

South Hamilton’s Aaron Hegland (left) and Ty Skartvedt run together on Tuesday. Hegland placed 11th, Skartvedt 13th. DFJ photo/Troy Banning

“It’s what I do (leading early) and I felt like I had a pretty good finish,” he said. “This one and Saydel are the two toughest courses we run. It’s pretty tough.”

Quinton Grove, the third piece of the Hawks’ lead pack, hung with the leaders as well and went on to place fourth in 18:05.67. He was just a few strides behind Brown as they entered the final mile, but was unable to make the final push alongside his teammates.

South Hamilton put all five of its scoring runners in the top 13.

“I was proud of them. They were games (on Tuesday),” South Hamilton head coach Darrell Paulsen said of his runners. “From a team aspect, I thought they gutted it out on a difficult course. But these are the courses that make us better.”

Aaron Hegland, who usually slots into the fifth position for the Hawks, continued to improve his standing. Picking up the slack for an ailing Ty Skartvedt, Hegland turned in a time of 19:12.50 to place 11th.

DFJ photo/Troy Banning

“Aaron beat Ty and that’s big for us because Aaron has steadily been getting better,” Peters said.

Knowing South Hamilton will need five solid performances when the postseason rolls around, Paulsen was also pleased with Hegland’s performance.

“We’ve always known that he could do that,” Paulsen said. “The more he gains the experience running the 3.1 (miles) and the more confidence he gets, there’s no limit to what he can do.”

Skartvedt, who gutted it out in spite of feeling a bit under the weather, was 13th in 19:26.00.

Logan Austin (20:25.75, 19th) and Clay Willadsen (20:52.21, 24th) were top-25 runners as well for the Hawks.

DFJ photo/Troy Banning

South Hamilton also took the top five spots in the junior varsity race. Trevor Lammers (21:06.70) won the gold.

It will be a quick turnaround for the Hawks, who will head to River Bend Golf Course in Story City this afternoon for the Roland-Story Invite.

West Marshall Invite

Tuesday at Lincoln Valley GC

State Center

Team Standings

1. South Hamilton 32; 2. West Marshall 94; 3. BCLUW 96; 4. Baxter 98; 5. Collins-Maxwell 99; 6. Ankeny Christian Academy 109; 7. Colo-NESCO 167.

Individual Top 5

1. Josiah Brown (SH) 17:33.36; 2. Caleb Silver (BCL) 17:38.71; 3. Logan Peters (SH) 17:43.03; 4. Quinton Grove (SH) 18:05.67; 5. Ian Thomson (BAX) 18:20.95.

Other South Hamilton Results

11. Aaron Hegland 19:12.50; 13. Ty Skartvedt 19:26.00; 19. Logan Austin 20:25.75; 24. Clay Willadsen 20:52.21.

South Hamilton JV Results

1. Trevor Lammers 21:06.70; 2. Gage Koster 21:15.08; 3. Jose Galeano 22:26.34; 4. Triston Koopman 23:56.86; 5. Evan Payne 24:05.37; 17. Connor Higgins 33:06.40; 19. Hunter Arneson 35:17.92; 21. Aiden Penning 39:01.78.