Camdenton’s Mason and Sweezor earn All-Conference
Camdenton went to battle with nine other teams for conference bragging rights at the Ozark Conference meet on Saturday at Lake Springfield. The boys finished seventh and the girls took eighth in the team standings, but the day did not end without some highlights as Skyler Sweezor placed 11th for the girls and Garrett Mason finished 12th for the boys to earn a spot on the All-Conference team.
“Although this is not where we want to be in the team standings, it does show an improvement over last year,” Camdenton coach David Weber said. “We have some really quality teams in our conference and we have yet to get to where we want to be, but there were a few bright spots.”
Among those bright spots were the races of Sweezor and Mason who made 2nd Team All-Conference by placing in the top 14. It is a task that Weber has often emphasized as being easier said than done in a large field of runners.
Sweezor had the top time for the Lakers, completing her race with a time of 22 minutes and 33 seconds to earn 11th. According to Weber, it was one of the best performances by a Camdenton girl at conference in years with Sweezor’s time being the highest finish in five years. Sweezor accomplished this, despite struggling with a hip issue.
“The hills at Lake Springfield made things a lot worse,” Weber said the plaguing injury. “At the 2.5 mile-mark, she was really struggling to just keep running and I really thought she might drop out because the pain was nearly unbearable. However, she showed what she is made of and actually ran more determined in passing two girls on the last big hill. She collapsed in tears across the line, but became All-Conference for her effort.”
Cambrie Kowal finished 42nd with a time of 27:07, Erika Nevins came in 48th at 28:12, Abbey Bellew was right behind her in 49th at 28:08 and Autumn Davis put up a time of 30:42 to finish 51st.
“I was also quite happy with the performance of Autumn who finished the tough course having come back from an injury. Her effort made sure that we had a team score,” Weber added.
Mason just narrowly missed the cut for All-Conference honors a season ago taking 15th, but he made sure he was among the top flight this time around as he took 12th with a time of 18:09.
“Garrett’s race was a good performance for him as he really had to work hard to get All-Conference honors,” Weber pointed out. “He ran a smart and consistent race, finished well and erased that disappointment from last year.”
Andrew DiBello put up a time of 19:04 to finish 32nd, Jake Thoenen earned 34th at 19:32, Sam Gray came in 42nd at 20:30 and Riley Head finished his day in 50th with a time of 21:48.
“Andrew also had a good race as he ran nearly two minutes faster than last year,” Weber stated.
The team may be young, but Weber is pleased with how things are shaping up.
“Our team on both sides is quite young and inexperienced, but they are all showing signs of coming together and working hard for each other,” he said. “I really like this group of kids and think that we have a lot to gain in the next few weeks and even next year.”
The Lakers will be in Waynesville on Thursday for a race at 4 p.m.