Milton seniors conclude most storied season
12/2/17 – Portland, Oregon
By Andy Carr
Milton High School senior cross-country runners Sam Bowers (35th-15:45) and Nicholas Yanek (44th-15:52) concluded the best season in Fulton County – if not the state of Georgia – by their finishes at the Nike Cross Country Nationals today on the Glendoveer Golf Course in Portland, Oregon. In a field of close to 200 runners, Eagle runners Bowers and Yanek raced the nation’s best high school runners on a rain-soaked and muddy course to finish in the top-50 in the nation.
The race started out fast and furious and also very crowded as the top-teams and individuals from around the country vied for the title in both a team and individual championship. Bowers and Yanek represented the SE USA which performed well with the winning team Loudon Valley (VA-1st-89 pts) coming from the SE region. Finishing 2nd overall was Brody Hasty (TN/Brentwood Academy-2nd-15:06) on the same SE team as Bowers and Yanek. The Milton duo had a crowded start and said they were pushed and bounced around most of the early part of the race. After the 1st mile, Bowers (52nd-4:56) and Yanek (67th-4:58) began to move steadily through the field and passed many by the time they got to the 2-mile mark where Bowers (30th-10:06) and Yanek (40th-10:10) had improved their positions and looked to be able to pass even more but as the final mile wound-down both Milton Eagles held pretty much where they were and went on to record their 35th and 44th place finishes. Later this week both Bowers and Yanek will be honored by Atlanta Track Club at their annual All-Metro Cross-Country banquet honoring the Atlanta area best cross country athletes. In 2016 Bowers was named Metro Cross Country Athlete of the Year.
This final race of the 2017 cross country season was the conclusion of Milton’s most successful season in school history with highlights that included an undefeated regular season, 5th consecutive county title, 4th consecutive Furman Invite title, 3rd region/area title, the school’s 1st state championship in the states largest classification. Along with the best team time average in state history, the Eagles look forward to improving on their 4th place state track finish from earlier this year, which was their first trophy winning performance at the state meet since 1966.