Whitewater High School sophomore Gio Anello competes in the WIAA Division 2 state cross country meet Saturday in Wisconsin Rapids and later celebrated his 25th place finish with teammates and supporters. (Submitted photo)

Sophomore clocks a personal best in Rapids

By Kevin Cunningham

Correspondent

Whitewater High School’s Gio Anello competed against the best runners in the state Saturday on the Ridges Golf Course in Wisconsin Rapids for the WIAA cross country championships.

Anello put together a time of 17:00.8 as a sophomore. His personal best was good for 25th place out of 152 total runners in Division 2 and he was the 10th-fastest sophomore. It was his first time competing at state.

“Gio was able to do what runners dream of, run their best race on the biggest stages,” Whippets’ head coach Chad Carstens said. “The Ridges Golf Course gets progressively harder as you go with the first mile relatively easy. The second mile has rolling hills and the third mile is tough. It has a way of eating runners up. Today, it would not claim Gio as one of its victims.

“Gio survived the WIAA sectional as the last individual qualifier and today he thrived at state as he was the second-best runner from our sectional after finishing 10th one week earlier,” Carstens added.

Carstens said Anello was in 50th place after the first mile and then was in the top 30 after the second mile concluded.

“In the final 1.1 miles, he slayed his way to an absolutely stellar 25th-place finish,” Carstens said. “Gio has a lot to celebrate after earning his first first-team all-RVC award a few weeks earlier, and not only his first trip to state, but a great one at that – a memorable day for sure.”

 
 

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