Whitefish Bay multi-time state distance running champion Camille Davre didn't have a lot of time to celebrate her historic fourth consecutive North Shore Conference individual cross country title at Tendick Park in Saukville on Saturday, Oct. 15.
She talked briefly about her smart and measured race, thanked teammates like Maggie Keiper for helping her secure the Blue Dukes' 17th league championship in a row and then quickly posed for a picture with individual runner-up and friend Sami Stieve of Germantown.
Then she and her mom had to quickly get in a car and get to the airport for a flight out of town for a college visit, something Davre's been doing a lot of lately as the highly talented and sought after competitor has many top Division I NCAA schools vying for her attention.
In short, it was the start of a busy and happy day for the senior.
"Our team did a great job today," she said while still catching her breath. "I just wanted to go out there and run a smart and controlled race. Just do my best. It also helped that my teammates like Maggie (Keiper) did a great job, too, so we could win the team championship."
The Blue Dukes now enter the heart of the championship phase of the season as they prepare for the WIAA sectional meet Saturday, Oct. 22, at Lincoln Park Golf Course in Glendale. The top two teams and first five individuals not on those teams will advance to the WIAA state meet Oct. 29 in Wisconsin Rapids.
Coach Mike Miller is feeling much better about the team's prospects for a good finish after this strong race, which is the highlight so far of what has been an up-and-down season for the Blue Dukes.
"Much, much better," he said. "It feels like the weight of the world is off my shoulders now. This season has been more emotional than normal. We're working with a lot of freshmen, so the season has been in a little more of a flux. When you have kids like that, you sometimes never know what you're going to get. We're lucky that they've blended together at the right time, that we have such nice, hard-working kids."
Junior Josie Helf feels the Blue Dukes are just getting warmed up.
"This is the time of year to come together," she said. "Things had been a little shaky for us for awhile, but right now everyone is feeling good and we really want to put together a good effort behind Cami (Davre). We want to be with her and make sure she has a team to run with at state."
Bay scored 40 points for its league title, well ahead of runner-up Port Washington (75) and third-place Germantown (79).
Davre ran with a small group for a time, and then broke away to win by 20 seconds on the slick and muddy 5,000-meter course in 18:45. Keiper was fifth in 19:35 while senior Ellie Hall was sixth in 20:16.
Miller was very pleased for Hall, saying she ran "a great race."
Other scoring runners included Helf in 13th (20:49) and freshman Alexa Bartschat (20:51). Also running were freshmen Zoe Styler (21:16) and Anika Horowtiz in 26th (21:21).
Miller said that Davre was solidly spectacular, as usual. He never wants to take her extraordinary talent for granted.
"She's a very confident young lady right now," he said, "and her training has been fantastic. She even got in the team picture before the meet (laughs)."