by Matt Deutsch | Correspondent
In what was one of the hottest days of the summer to date, the Hudson girls cross country team continued its hot start to the 2013 season at the Mentor Cardinal Classic.
The Lady Explorers finished second with 86 points in a field of 13 squads. The race took place Aug. 31 at Garfield Park.
Gates Mills Gilmour Academy nabbed first place with 37 points.
Medina finished third with 90 points.
"It was a solid performance by our varsity squad," said Hudson head coach Ed Hoffmeier.
Chardon's Samantha Stansbury finished first out of 114 runners with a time of 19 minutes, 30.38 seconds.
Four Lady Explorers placed in the top 19. Seven Hudson runners finished in the top 29.
Arielle Dalea led the way for Hudson. She finished 12th overall with a time of 20:40.
"She ran a great race," said Hoffmeier. "We're still figuring out how to race her."
In addition, Sarah Wolanske placed 16th with a time of 20:47.
"She's an incredible talent," said Hoffmeier. "She'll come to life by the district championship."
Madison VanDyke, who was celebrating her birthday, also ran a solid race, finishing 18th and posting a time of 20:57 in the process.
"Madison had a great performance," said Hoffmeier. "She reminded me why I coach these girls."
In addition, Kate McGregor finished 18th (21;02), Gabby Palazzo placed 21st (21:06) and Ellie Stiles captured 22nd (21:12).
"Ellie ran the entire race with a sore foot," said Hoffmeier.
Evie Thorne finished 29th with a time of 21:26 to round out the top seven for the Lady Explorers.
"It was a great race by the girls," said Hoffmeier. "We'll keep working and continue to improve just in time for the state championship."
Meanwhile, Hudson dominated in the open race.
The Lady Explorers finished first with 23 points. Behind them were Medina (47) and Mentor (64).
Freshman Morgan Kempf led the way with a second-place showing (21:53), while Sarah Miles was third with a time of 22:01, Natalie Stiles placed fourth (22:04) and Katie Castrigano finished sixth (22:58).
"The girls ran awesome," said Hoffmeier. "It was a great day."
Hudson is scheduled to run in the Bruce Lerch Invitational Sept. 7 at Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School. The race is set to begin at 9 a.m.