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Newfane sweeps at N-O league cross country meet

Photos by Tom Rivers: Austin Burkard, left, and Robert Stevenson race to the finish in the last stretch of today’s Niagara-Orleans All-League meet at Lakeside Beach State Park.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 27 October 2018 at 6:12 pm

Goerss is 4-time champ; Newfane freshman wins boys race

Austin Burkard just edged Robert Stevenson at the finish line.

WATERPORT – Newfane’s girls and boys cross country teams were repeat winners today in the Niagara-Orleans All-League meet at Lakeside Beach State Park, Both the girls and boys completed undefeated (12-0) Niagara-Orleans championship cross-country seasons.

Newfane also had the top finishers in the boys and girls races. Kim Goerss, a senior, won the race for the fourth straight year, with her best time at Lakeside, 19:35. Austin Burkard, a freshman, edged his teammate Robert Stevenson, a senior, at the finish. Burkard won in 17:31.8 with Stevenson at 17:32.6.

The Newfane boys had 28 points, followed by Wilson in second with 65. Barker was third in 75, followed by Akron in fourth at 100, Roy-Hart in fifth at 108, Medina in sixth at 164 and Albion, which didn’t field a full team of five runners.

Burkard held the lead for most of the race. Mike Heitzenrater, the Newfane coach, said Burkard has been getting faster throughout the season.

“He put it all out there,” Heitzenrater said about Burkard.

After the 1-2 Newfane finish, the top 7 finishers, which comprise the All-League first team, were Peter DiLorenzo of Barker (17:41), Casey Zuba of Akron (17:43), William Schwarzmueller of Wilson (17:49), Alan Lingle of Newfane ((17:52) and Ozzy Moore of Roy-Hart (17:53).

The All-League second team (the 8-14 finishers) includes, in order of their finish, Nick Baes of Newfane, Dominic Clementi of Barker, Jonathan Moote of Wilson, Nathan Moran of Newfane, Reuben Rivers of Albion, Connor Cuzzacrea of Newfane and Andrew Cuzzacrea of Newfane.

Kim Goerss of Newfane got out to an early lead and held off Anna Rickard of Roy-Hart and Alanna Holman of Albion.

The Newfane girls made it four straight championships with a score of 25, followed by runner-up Akron at 72. Barker was third with 82, and Albion was fourth with 91. Roy-Hart was fifth at 129, followed by Medina at 145 and Wilson at 165.

Newfane had five of the top eight spots with Goerss leading the way. She won the race by nearly a minute. She has been first-team All-League since seventh grade.

Goerss said she put in extra training over the summer to get ready for this season and that work is paying off.

“I enjoy the team atmosphere and everyone pushing themselves,” she said about her team.

Her coach said Goerss has taken her times to a new level this season.

“It’s her hard work and determination, and her focus,” Heitzenrater said.

Anna Rickard of Roy-Hart was second in the girls race at a time of 20:32, followed by Alanna Holman of Albion in third (20:44). The other first-team all-stars include Catalena Ersing of Newfane (20:48), Vanessa Burkard of Newfane (21:10), Lauren Wagner of Akron (21:17) and Lydia Chunco of Newfane (21:22).

The All-League second team (the 8-14 finishers) includes, in order of their finish, Marina Ersing of Newfane, Leah Siegmann of Newfane, Madison Jimerson of Akron, Kaila Szczygielski of Akron, Nina Burkard of Newfane, Shelby Nerber of Newfane and Lucinda Ingro of Barker.

Peter DiLorenzo of Barker sprints to finish third in the race, just ahead of Casey Zuba of Akron.

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