The Brookfield Central boys cross country team looks to improve upon a sixth-place finish in the 2013 Greater Metro Conference, the lowest finish in recent time.
The Lancers look to replace Michael Flatley, (first-team All-Conference, honorable mention All-Area and captain); Daniel Pearson (third-team All-Conference, captain) and Kevin Rindfleisch (four-time letter winner, consistent scorer, captain).
Coach Ronn Blaha has some key returning letter winners led by seniors Aaron Nelson, Josh Kuse and Jack Feltes and juniors Josh Trasser and Aaron Neustedter.
Here's a look at the top returnees and Blaha's thoughts on them.
Trasser (17 minutes, 2 seconds personal record): "Came on strong last year at the end of the season. He is becoming a tough competitor and should expect to be near the front of his races."
Neustedter (18:01 PR): "A smart runner; gained valuable varsity experience last year."
Nelson (17:44 PR): "Won the JV race at the Muskego Invite in 2013."
Kuse (18:16 PR): "Is a strong runner who is raising his expectations."
Feltes (18:32 PR): "Has been hampered by injuries the last two seasons."
Blaha said other possible impact runners are junior Sam Schreiner (18:31 PR), sophomore Joey Schindler (18:32 PR), junior Ethan Gustafson (18:29 PR) and senior Sean Markey (18:44 PR).
"Our number three through eight runners should be in a tight group in most races, and they should be near the front third of finishers," Blaha said. "Guys will rely on one another, and we will be able to overcome an off day from any one of them. There will not be a lot of drop off in races between our third- and eighth-place finisher."
Blaha feels the GMC will be a tough conference once again.
"While 2013 champ Marquette loses four seniors, they have replacements that make them the favorite to win the title in 2014," he said. "Crosstown rival Brookfield East will also provide a tough challenge, with Menomonee Falls and Wauwatosa East following closely behind."
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