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Montana Tech announces 1st cross country roster

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Posted at 11:46 AM, Jul 24, 2020

(Editor's note: Montana Tech media release)

BUTTE – Montana Tech head cross country coach Zach Kughn wasted no time when he arrived in Montana in January announcing his first signings before the end of his first month. Kughn is now announcing his full roster for the upcoming fall with nine women and seven men coming to Butte to run cross country for the Orediggers.

“I am incredibly excited to announce our first recruiting class for cross country,” said Kughn. “In just a short period of time we were able to assemble a roster of 16 student-athletes that will help us compete at a high level right off the bat.”

Butte’s Jacob Vetter and Manhattan's Jessa Steele were the first signees announced in January.

“These athletes had their last track seasons canceled and as disappointing as that was to see, I know it has left them all hungry and eager to compete this fall. They are putting in the work this summer required to be successful and I can’t wait to see Montana Tech uniforms on them all very soon," Kughn said.

High school track season was canceled due to the coronavirus in Montana and the country.

“I’m confident this group will cause quite a stir in the Frontier Conference and many will be able to compete at the national level this year as well," Kughn said. "I’m excited for them to join the Butte and Tech communities and contribute across the board. This is just the beginning for our program, but this class will be instrumental in getting us started from ground zero and this fall is set to be historic in many ways.”

Men’s Cross Country Team

Ian Barville |Spokane Valley, Wash. | University HS

High School: Ian ran prep at University HS in Washington. He was the District 8 Regional Championship runner-up in the 800m and finished 14th at WIAA 4A state meet as a sophomore. He ran the 1200m leg of the school record Distance Medley Relay team. Ian scored Distinguished on the PLTW National Test for BioMed. State championship finalist for HOSA’s CPR/First Aid competition.

Personal: Ian, the son of Jill and Curtis, plans on pursuing a degree in Biology.

Charles Carriker | Lacey, Wash. | North Thurston HS

High School: Charles ran prep at North Thurston HS. He was a first team all-league selection as a senior and qualified for the WIAA state meet. Charles was the team captain of the cross country team his junior and senior year helping lead the team to a district runner-up finish. Named scholar athlete in both cross country and track and field.

Personal: Charles, the son of Rau and stepmother Celia, plan on pursuing a degree in Mechanical Engineering.

Noah Colenso | Billings, Mont. | Billings West HS

High School: Noah ran prep for Billings West HS. He is the 2019 Billings City Meet 1600m Champ and won the city cross country meet.

Personal: Noah, the son of Scott and Jennifer Morstad, plans on pursuing a degree in Applied Health Sciences.

Henry Kakalecik |Great Falls, Mont. | Great Falls HS

High School: Henry ran prep at Great Falls HS. He was named the Runner of the Year and Most Valuable Runner at Great Falls HS.

Personal: Henry, the son of Heather and Ryan, plans on pursuing a degree in Business and Information Technology.

River Sheppard | Portland, Ore. | Grant HS

High School: River ran for 6A Grant HS in Portland, Ore. He completed the 1500m with a personal best 4:39 and a 10:34 in the 3000m. River ran a personal best 17:23 in the 5K in cross country.

Personal: River, the son of Cathy Wolfe and Mike Sheppard, is pursuing a degree in Data Science.

Jake Vetter | Butte, Mont. | Butte HS

High School: Jake ran prep at Butte HS. He is an eight-time all-conference and four-time all-state selection in the 800m. Jacob was an all-state selection in cross country and holds the 5K record for the Bulldogs. Named academic all-state in both cross country and track and field.

Personal: Jacob, the son of Lisa Hansen, is pursuing a degree in Occupational Safety and Health.

Drew Williams | Red Lodge, Mont. | Red Lodge HS

High School: Drew ran prep at Red Lodge HS. He is a two-time state qualifier in track and cross country and once in track and field. Selected all-conference as a sophomore in cross country. Named academic all-state. Member of the National Honor Society.

Personal: Drew, the son of Rebecca and Shane, is pursuing a degree in Mechanical Engineering.

Women’s Cross Country Team

Karolyna Buck | St. Ignatius, Mont. | St. Ignatius HS

High School: Karolyna ran prep for St. Ignatius HS. Three-time all-conference selection and 2019 Divisional Champion in cross country. Finished third place at state meet in high jump in track and field. Holds school records in 800m, 1600m, and 4x100m relay. Named academic all-state in cross country, volleyball, and basketball.

Personal: Karolyna, the daughter of Nicky and Jeff, plans on pursuing a degree in Nursing.

Raychel Hoerner | Columbia Falls, Mont. | Columbia Falls HS

High School: Raychel ran prep for Columbia Falls HS. Selected all-conference in softball as a junior. Member of the 2016 basketball State Championship team. Named academic all-conference nine different times.

Personal: Raychel, the daughter of Jenny and Ray, plans on pursuing a degree in Environmental Engineering.

Payton Huss | Lacey, Wash. | North Thurston HS

High School: Payton ran prep for North Thurston HS. Four-time district qualifier in cross country. Member of the district championship 4x400m relay team in track and field. District qualifier in javelin. Named scholar athlete six different times.

Personal: Payton, the daughter of Kimberly and Chris, plans on pursuing a degree in Nursing.

Brook Luly | Shelby, Mont. | Shelby HS

High School: Brook ran prep at Shelby HS. Three-time all-conference selection in 800m in track and field. Two-time all-conference selection in volleyball. Named KSEN Athlete of the Week twice in volleyball. Named Great Falls Tribune Athlete of the Week. Named academic all-state 12 different times.

Personal: Brook, the daughter of Scott Luly and Sharon Phillips, plans on pursuing a degree as a Medical Assistant.

Carlin Manning | Kalispell, Mont. | Flathead HS

High School: Carlin ran prep at Flathead HS. State qualifier in cross country. Named academic all-state 9 different times.

Personal: Carlin, the daughter of Chaela and Doug, plans on pursuing a degree in Business and Information Technology.

Averi Parker | West Yellowstone, Mont. | West Yellowstone HS

High School: Averi ran prep for West Yellowstone HS. Two-time state champion in cross country. Three-time state champion in 3200m and state champion in 1600m in track and field. Two-time all-state selection in 1600m. Named academic all-state in cross country, basketball, and track and field.

Personal: Averi, the daughter of Kerry and Cole, plans on pursuing a degree in Business.

Alyssa Plant | Clancy, Mont. | Helena HS

High School: Alyssa ran prep for Helena HS. Named all-conference in 3200m in track and field. Named academic all-state seven times. Earned Valedictorian.

Personal: Alyssa, the daughter of Sheila and Jay, plans on pursuing a degree in Environmental Engineering.

Becca Richtman | Elburn, Ill. | Winona State | Kaneland HS

2020 Indoor: NCAA DII Provisional National Qualifier Indoor Mile of 4:58.44 at the Maverick Invite.

2019 Outdoor: Selected all-conference in the steeplechase. Placed eighth at the NSIC Championships in the steeplechase (11:19.39). Season-best steeple time of 11:19.29. Season-best 1500m time of 4:49.12. Season-best 5000m time of 18:21.11.

2019 Indoor: Season-best 800m time of 2:26.84. Season-best 1000m time of 3:08.04. Season-best mile time of 5:24.14.

2018 Cross Country: Ran at all six events. Posted a 19:55.7 (5K) to begin the year. Season-best 6K time of 23:54.8 to place 63rd at the NSIC Championships. Ran a 24:08.4 at the NCAA Regional.

2018 Outdoor: Season-best 800m time of 2:26.34. Season-best 1500m time of 5:04.21. Season-best steeplechase time of 12:18.23.

2018 Indoor: Member of DMR team that placed third at the NSIC Championships with a time of 12:19.41. Season-best mile time of 5:18.49. Season-best 1000m time of 3:05.31.

2017 Cross Country: Ran in five races as a freshman. Ran a 24:30.0 at the NSIC Championships.

Personal: Becca, the daughter of Karen and Tom, is pursuing a degree in Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences.

Jessa Steele | Manhattan, Mont. | Manhattan HS

High School: Jessa ran prep at Manhattan HS. Three-time all-state selection in cross country. Two-time all-state in 3200m in track and field. Helped lead team to three state championships and a runner-up finish. Named academic all-conference six different times. Ranked #1 in graduating class.

Personal: Jessa, the daughter of Cerece and Robert, plans on pursuing a degree in computer science.