Running next to one another for Ripon are, from left, Elena Williams, McKenzie Nodolf and Jenna Brantley.
Running next to one another for Ripon are, from left, Elena Williams, McKenzie Nodolf and Jenna Brantley.

   Dayton Baird attempted to cross a makeshift bridge at a wet and muddy Lomira Invitational last week Thursday evening.

   The Ripon High School cross country runner missed the platform and went face first into the moving water and ended up being completely submerged in it.

   He didn’t let the moment sink his chances of recording a strong finish, however, as he got back up and recovered to place 15th with a time of 18 minutes, 42 seconds.

   Baird’s performance epitomized the Tiger cross country team’s motto this season of “No Excuses.”

   “He was able to take a not-so-good situation and turn it into a positive one for him; he ran a very decent race after that incident,” Ripon head coach Chris Gatzke said.

   The sophomore wasn’t the only Tiger to make the most out of less-than-ideal conditions last week Thursday.

   Both the Ripon boys’ and the girls’ teams battled through the mud to post respectable finishes.

   The girls placed second out of eight schools, while the boys — who were without two runners — were fourth out of nine schools in the final tune-up before Thursday’s East Central Conference meet.

Read the full story in the Oct. 17, 2019 edition of the Ripon Commonwealth Press.