The Hinton girls cross country team has been ranked as one of the best teams in the state for most of the season. The Blackhawks proved why while clinching the War Eagle Conference championship on Tuesday night in Paullina.
The Blackhawks placed all five of their scoring runners in the top-eight of the field allowing them to run away with the title. Hinton head coach Craig Hoffman says it was special to bring home Hinton’s first girls cross country conference title.
Hinton does not have one runner that is going to pace the field or win races by a large margin. Rather, they utilize five girls that run up front in a pack which gives them the opportunity to score well as a team. That pack running has been key allowing Hinton to win seven of their eight meets this season.
The best part about Hinton’s pack running strategy is that it does not have to be the same runner leading the pack every night. In fact, a lot of different runners have gotten the chance to pace the Blackhawks this season. Coach Hoffman says that gives them many options if someone is having a bad night.
Switching over to the boys side, Hinton has been led by their only all-conference runner this season in Caleb Bower. As a freshman last year, Bower missed out on qualifying for state by just seven seconds placing 11th in the state qualifying meet. Coach Hoffman says he has upped his ability to make sure that does not happen again this year.
Hinton now turns their attention to their state qualifying meet this year which will run in Spencer on Thursday, October 19. Coach Hoffman wants the kids to be in control of their own ability which will then allow everything else to fall into place.
The Blackhawks will run with the rest of our area 1A schools in that state qualifying meet in Spencer next week.