That continued on Saturday at the Division II state championship cross country race. Coon ran a time of 16:39.0 to finish 11th, while Lambert ran 16:40 to take 12th as both earned All-Ohio status at cold and wet National Trail Raceway.
As a group the Edison boys finished 13th (280 points) in the race won by Woodridge (109).
On the girls side, the Chargers’ Abby Lesniak also earned All-Ohio, crossing the line in 23rd (19:41.9). The top 25 runners in each division were recognized as All-Ohio by the Ohio Association of Track and Cross Country Coaches.
“It feels great to actually achieve our goals. It’s something we’ve been working for all season,” said Coon, a junior and first-time state qualifier. “Since June 5th, our goal was to be All-Ohio and be on the podium.”
Lambert, a junior and two-time defending Sandusky Bay Conference champion, was running in his third state meet. He was 78th as a freshmen, then 41st as a sophomore.
“I was hoping to get on the podium and I got top 12,” he said. “Now, I’ll be on the wall in my school.”
The start was key for Coon and Lambert.
“We got out with the front group and everyone ran that first mile slower than they wanted to,” Lambert said. “But the pace was pretty average.
“The whole race our coaches were yelling,’You’re top 12, you’re top 12.’”
Postponed a week because of flooding, the athletes got an extra week of work in.
“We planned our workouts so well, it actually worked to our favor.” Lambert said.
Coon agreed: “I definitely feel like the extra week helped me a lot. I was a little upset about my race at regionals. Those two weeks between really allowed me to focus and get my game plan down.”
Also for the Chargers on Saturday, Jonathon Hrivnak was 61st (17:34.4). Dax Austin (18:31.5) was 136th, while Gabe Tice (19:01.7) was 157th. Rounding out the lineup was Aidan Anderson (169th, 19:25.5) and Keagan Grames (173rd, 19:44.4).
Lesniak is just a sophomore, already with two state meets under her belt.
“I was really close to the top 20. My goal was the top 15 and to be in the 18-minute area, but I just couldn’t quite get there this year,” Lesniak said. “But it was kind of a slow course. I thought it was going to be quicker, but it was really muddy. I’m still proud of how I did.”
Her strategy was to stay with Lexington — the two-time state champions, after winning Saturday with 72 points.
“My goal was to go out with Lexington, but I lost them in the huge pack of people,” Lesniak said. “So I just paced off of different people and ran my own race.
“Finally, in the last mile, I kicked it in and gave it my all to jump more than 10 places.”
Norwalk’s Vazquez competes
HEBRON — Norwalk senior runner Robert Vazquez finished in 125th out of 186 runners in a fast Div. I boys race on Saturday.
Vazquez, who helped lead the Truckers to the SBC Lake Division title this season, was 117th at the first mile mark (5:14.4). He stumbled to 132nd (10:59.4) after two miles — but moved back up seven spots to finish in 17:32.9.