By William /

LYONS – It was a grand day to be a Smoky Valley cross country runner as both Gracie Lambert and Tytus Reed ran well enough to gain Central Kansas League championship trophies while the Viking boys also brought home the league team championship as well at the league meet in Lyons on Thursday.

“It truly was a momentous day to be a Viking runner,” exclaimed Viking head coach Jay Myers. “Weather was ideal for running, the course was relatively flat and the host team, Lyons, got it right and did it well. Ten of the fifteen high school kids that ran today recorded personal record runs while several others produced their second fastest times.”

Not only did Gracie Lambert take the league title for the Lady Vikings by running the course in 20:26.40, but three of the four girls running also set personal records as they closed out the regular 2021 season. Sophia Fruits also medaled when she finished eighth. The Lady Vikings did not figure in the team standings as they had four of their eight runners not competing due to injuries, illness, or family circumstances.

Talking about the shortage on the Viking girls team at the meet, Coach Myers pointed out, “Can’t do the would’ve, could’ve, should’ve thing with the girls. We just had to face the facts and deal with the idea we were four girls down and with only four left, unable to be in the team standings. Instead, we focused on doing the best we could. The girls came to run, and Gracie (Lambert) absolutely torched the field in what is not her fastest time this year, but what an effort it was. The other three ran their fastest or second fastest times of the season. We really wanted to beat Pratt this season, and I liked our chances.”

For the Viking boys, leading them to the league title was Tytus Reed who took home the league championship with a personal best record run of 16:59.10.

Five of the seven Viking boys placed in the top ten with Britton Becker finishing third, Garrett Huffman placed fifth, Lukas Apel ran seventh and Justice Gardner finished tenth while Samuel Peterson placed 12th, giving the Smoky Valley boys six medalist on the day.

Turning to the Viking boys, Coach Myers added, “How about the boys, six runners got a Central Kansas League medal today. The past few days we have talked about ‘taking care of business’ and they did just that. Big shout out to Tytus Reed for blasting the field with an outstanding personal record effort of just under 17 minutes. Shout out number two to Lukas Apel who ran his first meet of the season. He went out too fast and struggled a bit later, but I did not allow him to be disappointed for long as he ran in the 17-minute range and we will take that, plus he finished seventh. Shout out number three goes to Britton Becker who ran around a 30-second personal record to finish third. He was one focused young man this afternoon.”

Coach Myers continued his post-meet reflections by saying, “What I saw was effort and that was fun to watch. We have the individual league champion in both girls and boys as they were on fire. Then we won our second-straight boys league team title with six of the seven varsity runners earning a medal.”

In the junior varsity boys run, three of the four Viking harriers placed in the top ten, led by Sebastion Pavlovich who placed second while Immanuel Cooper and Elijah Spooner ran seventh and eighth, respectively.

Concluding his post-meet reflections, Coach Myers discussed the junior varsity runners when he said, “In the junior varsity race, Sebastion (Pavlovich) was second with a personal record time that was close to two full minutes faster than his previous best time. In the same race, Immanuel (Cooper) and Elijah (Spooner) were each assigned the same times in a photo finish with both being around a minute-and-a-half faster in the personal record times. These three guys will be our alternates next week at Regionals.”

State Regionals will be on Saturday, October 23 and hosted by Southeast of Saline.



(40 runners total)

Team Standings = 1. Pratt 46; 2. Hillsboro 58; 3. Hoisington 62; 4. Halstead 76; 5. Lyons 117.

GRACIE LAMBERT finished 1st (LEAGUE CHAMPION) with a time of 20:26.40

Sophia Fruits finished 8th (medaled) with time of 22:02.40 (personal record)

Esther Clark finished 19th with a time of 24:15.30 (personal record)

Lydia Peterson finished 20th with a time of 24:37.20

{Not running – Keira Mullen and Kenzie Heline due to injuries, Olivia Bengtson due to an illness and Adrien Lochard due to a family thing)


(46 runners total)

Team Standings = 1. SMOKY VALLEY VIKINGS 26; 2. Hoisington 55; 3. Hesston 61; 4. Halstead 117; 5. Pratt 126; 6. Haven 128.

TYTUS REED finished 1st (LEAGUE CHAMPION) with a time of 16:59.10 (personal record)

Britton Becker finished 3rd (medaled) with a time of 17:41.00 (personal record)

Garrett Huffman finished 5th (medaled) with a time of 17:47.50

Lukas Apel finished 7th (medaled) with a time of 17:57.00

Justice Gardner finished 10th (medaled) with a time of 18:06.70

Samuel Peterson finished 12th (medaled) with a time of 18:15.80

Brayden Eyer finished 21st with a time of 19:11.10 (personal record)


(31 runners total)

Sebastion Pavlovich finished 2nd with a time of 19:55.90 (personal record)

Immanuel Cooper finished 7th with a time of 21:52.10 (personal record)

Elijah Spooner finished 8th with a time of 21:52.10 (personal record)

Nicholas Dreier finished 29th with a time of 27:55.10

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