After earning the second qualifying spot for NXN last fall, a slew of impressive track performances this spring, and returning most of that team, a return to NXN looked like a virtual cinch. However, things haven't played out quite as well as Middleton had hoped, and rather than defending their State Championship from a year ago, they fell nine points shy of the team from Neenah. It was the culmination of a season that saw Middleton employ the strategy of rarely (if ever) racing their top seven all together in one meet, meaning that they did not develop a great resume in head-to-head matchups (in fact, they won just three meets in which they ran a varsity team, and finished a distant 8th at the Roy Griak Invitational). But the real downfall to Middleton's season was the Achilles injury to Roman Ystenes right before their Sectional race, as the absence of their number-two runner at the State Championships was almost certainly the primary factor in not defending their title. If Middleton wants to get back to NXN, they will either need Ystenes to run and pick up where he left off before the injury, or they'll need another runner to take a great step up.
|Average Time: 16:07.41 Total Time: 1:20:37.03 1-5 Split: 31.03|