It was a great year for the Mt. Zion boys cross country team in 2011. The Braves won the 1A state championship with 76 points and 1-5 split of 1:04. Coach Harbeck loses five of his top seven from that team including senior leader Joe Frtizche who finished sixth, and Patrick Tharp and Nick Toothman who placed in the top 40. However, the team does return top runner Jake Brown and number seven Timmy McElroy.
Brown finished third behind Monticello's Steve Schroeder and Beecher's Grant Nykaza. He will once again be a top three finisher, but will have plenty of competion with Nykaza as well as two other seniors, Blake Hale, and Jesse Hahne. Brown is coming off a successful track season which he posted times of 9:37.82 for 3200 meters and 4:26.86 for 1600 meters. McElroy, a senior has state experience, but as a freshman. In 2009, he finished 144th at state. Sophomores Curtis Reed and Mohammad Hosseini will contibute as the number three and four runners. Hosseina has a season best time of 16:26.61 which is the third fastest on the team coming into 2012. Coach Harbeck says the fifth runner is to be determined with junior Noah Gingrich and sophomore Aiden Gerhardt who have times in the mid to high 17 range battling it out for the final spot.
The Braves have a solid number one in Brown and two in McElroy. The question will be the depth of this program. They aren't stacked like last year's team and coming in have a 1-5 split of 2:43.53 which is far from impressive. Look for Coach Harbeck's squad to be competitve at the state meet, but finish around fifth.
Coach Harbeck Says...
"The goals are to remain competitive and to return to state."
2012 Returner's Top Times
Three Mile (XC)