2017-2018 Varsity Cross Country Schedule

Varsity Boys Cross Country2017
Varsity Girls Cross Country 2017
Coaches:  Ricke Stucker (Boys Head Coach); Chad Salinas (Girls Head Coach)
Seniors Juniors Sophomores Freshmen
Corey Dea
Noah Gallaher
Rafael Lopez
Justin Taflinger
Alex Ward

Taylor Walden
Julian Wallace

Tyasia Burks
Liesl Elkin
Nathanael Elkin

Jordenn Call
Josilyn McNeil
Bricely Picasso


Madison Collins

Date Opponent Time Score
Aug. 15 Northwestern Combo (Girls only) 5:00 pm The KHS girls cross country team opened up their season Tuesday evening at the Northwestern Combination (3 kilometer) at Oakbrook Valley.

In the three and four race, senior Taylor Walden finished 6th with a time of 14:53. Taylor ran a tough, gutsy race while still working to get into racing shape. She passed up two girls in the final 400 meters, edging one of them out at the line.

In the final race of the evening (five, six, seven plus race), freshman Madison Collins came in 13th place with a time of 16:53.
Aug. 19 Logansport Invite (T) 9:00 am Boys
Kokomo had a fourth-place finish at the Logansport Invitational. Corey Dea medaled with a third-place finish of 18:12. Justin Taflinger finished in a time of 18:41 for 13th. Alex Ward was 22nd in a time of 19:13. Julian Wallace was 35th with a time of 20:00 and Rafael Lopez was 42nd with a time of 20:33.
Kokomo's top finisher was senior Taylor Walden with a time of 23:26 for 20th place. I was pleased to see her moving in the right direction with her time. She
has had a few tough weeks and was looking forward to racing and competing in a 5K race. This race should light a fire for her, and I expect that with a full week of solid training, she will cut significant time off at our next meet.

The remaining four Lady Kat runners finished within two minutes of each other. They paced, motivated, and encouraged each other throughout the tough, humid race.

Josilynn McNeil was first in this group for the Kats in 63rd place with a time of 27:46. Bricely Picasso finished 71st in 28:30, Madison Collins followed in 73rd place with a time of 28:56, and Tyasia Burks finished 77th in 29:44 to round out the Top 5 for the Lady Kats. Our gap time between our first and fifth finishers was 6:22. We will be able to cut our gap time by a few minutes over the course of the next few meets.
​Coach Salinas
Aug. 26 McCutcheon Invite (T) 9:00 am Boys
McCutcheon won with a perfect score of 15 against the 10 entered teams in the Maverick Stampede. Kokomo placed 6th . The Mavericks' Will Person crossed the line first in 17:02.76 - on the hilliest course we see.

All six Kat runners ran well and they set season bests in average team time and 1-5 gap time.

For the Wildkat harriers, Corey Dea was 16th in 18:43, Justin Taflinger placed 21st with
19:16, Julian Wallace grabbed 29th at 19:45, Rafe Lopez finished 46th -clocking a 20:52,
Noah Gallaher got 48th - recording a 20:58, and Nat Elkin sprinted 21:50 for 54th .
Coach Stucker
Leading the way for the Lady Kats was senior Taylor Walden in 24th place with a time of 23:56 on the most challenging course that we will run all season. I would like to see Taylor get more aggressive during the second mile in her races.

Junior Tyasia Burks had a breakout run, cutting 58 seconds off of her personal best time on this extremely slow course finishing 50th with a time of 28:46. She has made a big impact for our team in practices and meets. I think that with a solid week of practice, Tyasia will cut at least a minute off of her personal best this Saturday.

We had junior Liesl Elkin and sophomore Jordenn Call run their first varsity 5k race at the McCutcheon course. It was nice to see these ladies push themselves further than they thought they could. I am looking forward to seeing continued improvement with our young team throughout the next few weeks.
Coach Salinas
Sept. 2 Marion Invite (T) 9:00 am Boys
Kokomo finished eighth out of sixteen teams in the large-school division.

Corey Dea placed 27th with a time of 17:42. Justin Taflinger was 34th with a time of 17:49, Alex Ward finished at 39th with a personal best of 17:57. Julian Wallace crossed the finish line in 18:27 finishing in 55th place and Rafe Lopez had a time of 19:54 for 89th place.

Sophomore Bricely Picasso finished in 113th place at 26:08 to log Kokomo's top finish.
Sept. 9 Maconaquah Invite (T) 9:00 am Boys
Kokomo was fifth out of the 16-team meet with 156 points. Lapel finished first with 45 points.

Top runners for Kokomo were Cory Dea (17:59), Justin Taflinger (18:28), Julian Wallace (18:33), Alex Ward (18:48) and Noah Gallaher (20:20).

The Kokomo girls placed 12th on the girls side of the Maconaquah invitational. Top runners were Taylor Walden (23:15) and Tyasia Burks (26:14).
Sept. 16 New Prairie Invite (T) 8:30 am Boys
The Kokomo boys were 31st in the class AAA large school division. Corey Dea placed 146th in 16:38.
Kokomo finished 32nd in the class AAA large school division. Taylor Walden had the top finish with a time of 25:16.
Sept. 23 Culver Invite (T) 8:45 am Boys
Our Wildkat boys placed 15thon Saturday at the Culver Invitational.

It was a very hot, humid day and times were slower by about 48 seconds.

Corey Dea led our harriers by placing 39thin 18:28. Justin Taflinger was 49thwith an 18:38, Julian Wallace crossed the line at 19:23 for 70thspot, Rafe Lopez finished 119th-clocking 20:42, Alex Ward ran 20:57-completing the course in 127th, and Nat Elkin recorded a 21:26-good enough for 132nd.

The Kats start the tournament series on Saturday at IWU at the North Central Conference meet. Starting time is 10:00 a.m.
Coach Stucker
The Kokomo girls' cross country team finished 23rdin the Culver Invite on Saturday morning.

Leading the way for the Lady Kats was senior Taylor Walden with a time of 25:29.

We had our toughest week of practice yet and I knew we would struggle to run fast times with the unseasonably high heat and humidity. All of our girls are going to have to run much better to finish where we would like to over the next two weeks (conference and sectional).

We will be running our North Central Conference meet at Indiana Wesleyan this Saturday and we hope to see you there.
Coach Salinas
Sept. 30 North Central Conference @ IWU 10:00 am Boys
Kokomo placed fourth in the conference meet behind winner McCutcheon. Corey Dea had a 16th-place finish with his season-best time of 17:25. Julian Wallace was 20th (17:36), Alex Ward was 29th (18:10), Justin Taflinger was 30th (18:11) and Rafe Lopez was 50th (19:22).
The Kokomo girls were eighth in the conference meet. Taylor Walden was 20th (22:32), Madison Cleaver placed 41st, Tyasia Burks was 42nd and Bricely Picasso was 45th.
Oct. 7 IHSAA Sectional @ Logansport 10:30/11:15 Boys
Our Wildkat boys' cross country team placed 5thin Saturday's IHSAA Sectional at Logansport and qualified for the Culver Regional this coming Saturday. The gun goes off at 10:30 AM.

Leading the Kokomo harriers was Julian Wallace in 9thplace-running 18:13. It was very windy, the Berry Patch was muddy, and times were over 60 seconds slower than last week.

Corey Dea ran 18:33 and finished 17th, and Justin Taflinger crossed the line in 18:40, which earned him 19thspot. Alex Ward clocked a 19:44 and placed 41st. Rafe Lopez was 49thin 20:16, and Nat Elkin recorded a 21:46-good enough for a 65thfinish card.
- Coach Stucker
The Kokomo Lady Kats competed Saturday at the sectional meet at Logansport, bringing home a ninth place finish.

Leading the Lady Kats and advancing individually to the regional meet at Culver was senior Taylor Walden, who had a time of 23:39 for a 28th place finish. Taylor was the 10th and final individual to advance to the regional meet on the windy, hilly, and humid Berry Patch course. It was exciting to see Taylor compete and pass multiple girls over the last 400 meters of the race.

The goal for Taylor at the Culver Regional will be to run a season best time and let the chips fall where they may. I am excited to see how much time she can cut off next week.
- Coach Salinas
Oct. 14 IHSAA Regional @ Culver 10:30/11:15 Boys
Kokomo finished in 8th place with a team point total of 188. Individually, Corey Dea 17:58 (18th), Justin Wallace 18:06 (23rd), Justin Taflinger 19:02 (53), Alexander Ward 19:10 (59th), Nathaniel Elkin 20:38 (81).
Taylor Walden finished 64th with a time of 23:40.
Oct. 21 IHSAA Semi-State @ New Prairie   Justin Wallace was 136th with a time of 18:04 and Corey Dea was 156th with a time of 18:37.
Season Review - Boys
Our boys' Wildkat harriers placed 4th in the NCC, 5th in the sectional, 8th in the regional, and qualified two individuals for the semi-state. We had 94 cross country alumni contact us in the last 12 months.

We were led by three-year senior captain Corey Dea. His time of 17:27 was #1 in Howard County and he earned #3 All-County honors. He was Academic All-State 1st Team, Academic All-NCC, and won our Booster Club Academic
Award for highest GPA. He also was our Attitude Award winner.

Junior Julian Wallace, in his first year of cross country, ran 17:36, which was the 3rd best in the county and he earned #2 All-County laurels. Senior Justin Taflinger ran 17:49 which was #6 in the county, and he was named #7 All-County. Senior Alex Ward ran a 17:56, which was 8th fastest in the county, and he was awarded #10 All-County spot. Senior Rafe Lopez rejoined the team this season and recorded a personal best of 19:22, and sophomore Nat Elkin ran a 20:16 and won our Most Improved Award.
Coach Stucker
Season Review - Girls
The 2017 Lady Kats cross country team finished the season with each runner cutting minutes off of their initial 5k times throughout the season. I am proud of the improvement that each runner made. We had zero returning runners from last year and gained valuable experience that we can build off of for years to come.

Kokomo senior Taylor Walden was a vital part of our team and her leadership, experience, and positive attitude were extremely beneficial throughout the season. She finished her high school cross country career advancing to the regional meet. Taylor has so much potential; I believe she can be one of the top runners in the area for this upcoming track season.

We had a duo of Tyasia Burks and Madison Collins who came in and helped us out quite a bit this season. They really provided a competitive edge and exciting spark to our team. It was a lot of fun watching these two grow over the season. This was a valuable year for these two as they grew more confident and competitive with each meet. They have a great future in distance running with their great work ethic, attention to detail, and desire to excel.

We had also had Liesl Elkin (junior) and Jordenn Call (sophomore) who ran together and pushed each other throughout the season. These two young ladies were the other two members of our varsity team and they cut off over five minutes apiece from their 5k times throughout the season. Liesl and Jordenn both pushed through nagging injuries and showed a tremendous amount of toughness over the course of the year. I am proud of both of these girls and the perseverance they displayed.

The focus for our program will be building toward the future; the focus for these young ladies now shifts toward the track and field season. Hopefully they have a great winter of training and are ready to go for track. Our girls need to build a cardiovascular base and run competitive races over next summer to accomplish our team goals for next season.
- Coach Salinas

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