Wilson leads Bulldogs to team title
Rian Wilson was as appreciative as anyone to compete at the Niagara Region High School Athletic Association’s Zone 3/4 cross country meet at Fireman’s Park in Niagara Falls Wednesday.
The 16-year-old, Grade 11 student at Sir Winston Churchill, who missed last year’s event with an injury, made a triumphant return to action by crossing the finish line first in the senior boys division.
“Last year I strained my calf and wasn’t able to compete,” Wilson said. “It was pretty awesome. The last 200 metres when I was bringing it home I was thinking this is my first high school OFSAA (Ontario Federation of Schools Athletic Association) series-type race. I raced a few at invitationals, but this is the first step of the process.
Wilson finished the six-kilometre course in a time of 21:15.8.
“It was semi-tough,” he said. “I think I could have gained a bit more but it sure wasn’t easy.”
Wilson said he got a burst of energy late in the race and went with it.
“My race plan was to stay with the guys, the Sir Winston race team, so we run as a pack,” he said. “One of my teammates (Walker Roll), got out really fast and we were with the top guys at that point. I was pretty much behind a couple of guys I know and they were leading and I just felt super comfortable in the woods there so I took off and pushed the pace.”
Wilson’s effort helped lead the Bulldogs to the team title as well.
“There are definitely different types of races. Since we’re such a team, we typically like to work together as a team for most the of races which aren’t as high of a priority,” Wilson explained. “So for a race like zone, or an invitational maybe, which are easier, low-key races, we decided to run as a team and work together. That’s the main point. For SOSSA (Southern Ontario Secondary Schools Association) and OFSAA, that where we really push as a team.”
Wilson, who trains out of Runners’ Edge with coach Benny Ralston and the rest of the Bulldogs, has high aspirations going forward.
“The main goal is all for the team this year,” Wilson said. “We hope to win senior boys. I think it’s been 30 years. Benny doesn’t have his OFSAA gold as at team so hopefully we bring that home.”
SOSSA will be held Thursday, Oct. 27 at Fireman’s Park.
Senior boys individual: 1. Kaden Shaw, A.N. Myer (21:51.8); 2. Samuel Tonnies, Port Colborne HS; 3 Calvin Barry, Robert Land Academy; 4. Ethan Van Niekerk, E.L. Crossley; 5. Naji Sallans, Robert Land Academy.
Senior boys team: 1. A.N. Myer (1:41:46.50); 2. Robert Land Academy; 3. E.L. Crossley.
Junior boys individual: 1. Jackson Sider, E.L. Crossley (18:00.8); 2. Maxwell Myers, E.L. Crossley; 3. Nicolas Deschamps, ESC; 4. Ryan Zucco, E.L. Crossley; 5. Henry Knafelc, E.L. Crossley.
Junior boys team: 1. E.L. Crossley (1:17:35.11).
Novice boys individual: 1. Chase Owen, Centennial (16:15.4); 2. Griffin Eller, E.L. Crossley; 3. Jonah Shapland, E.L. Crossley; 4. Logan MacRae, E.L. Crossley; 5. Adam Freure, E.L. Crossley.
Novice boys team: E.L. Crossley (1:08:11.50); 2. Greater Fort Erie; 3. Franco Niagara.
Senior boys individual: 1. Rian Wilson, Sir Winston Churchill (21:15.8); 2. Fenway Breckel, Governor Simcoe; 3 Marco DiFelice, Sir Winston Churchill; 4. Sebastian Glaser, Governor Simcoe; 5. Redding Maxwell, Sir Winston.
Senior boys team: 1. Sir Winston Churchill (1:29:34.50); 2. Eden; 3. West Niagara; 4. Smithville Christian; 5. Heritage Christian.
Junior boys individual: 1. Graham Tomori, Eden (16:59.8); 2. Samuel Dellalian, Sir Winston Churchill; 3. Julian VanHooydonk, Heritage Christian; 4. Jackson McIntosh, West Niagara; 5. Owen Masterson, Sir Winston Churchill.
Junior boys team: 1. Sir Winston Churchill (1:18:01.90); 2. Smithville Christian; 3. West Niagara; 4. Eden; 5. Laura Secord.
Novice boys individual: Jaxson Hildreth, Sir Winston Churchill (16:18.9); 2. Carson Walker, Sir Winston Churchill; 3. Simon Dobrovolski, Sir Winston 4. Julian Cirasuolo, Sir Winston Churchill; 5. Damien Bertrand, Sir Winston Churchill.
Novice boys team: Sir Winston Churchill (1:05:35.10); 2. Heritage Christian; 3. Eden; 4. Great Lakes; 5. West Niagara.
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