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Prep cross-country roundup: Willmar takes both team titles at 8AA championships

Cardinals earn state berths for the boys' and girls' teams in the section meet at Alexandria. Willmar's Sully Anez is the boys' section champion and Lauren Eilers finishes second in the girls' race. New London-Spicer's boys and girls teams each place ninth. Meanwhile in Section 3A, Lac qui Parle Valley/Dawson-Boyd's boys take first.

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Willmar's Lauren Eilers finished second in the Section 8AA championships Thursday, Oct. 28 in Alexandria. The Cardinals won the section title at Arrowwood Resort. Eric Morken/Alexandria Echo-Press
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EDITOR'S NOTE: The Class 3A girls cross-country results initally posted were incorrect. They have been removed.

ALEXANDRIA — There was plenty of doubt about whether Willmar’s boys and girls cross-country teams could earn their way back to the state meet.

In last week’s Central Lakes Conference championships, the girls were third and the boys were fourth. Only the top two in Section 8AA advance to the state meet. There were plenty of scenarios where both Willmar squads could take third and be out of the mix.

Instead, Willmar had its best race of the season.

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Both the boys and girls teams won their divisions at the Section 8AA championships at Arrowwood Resort.

Coming into the meet, the boys were ranked state-wide behind Alexandria and the girls were behind two other Section 8AA teams: Alexandria and Rocori.

Willmar finished ahead of both Thursday.

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Willmar's Colin O'Farrell finished third overall in the Section 8AA championships Thursday, Oct. 28 in Alexandria. O'Farrell had a time of 16 minutes, 56.8 seconds at Arrowwood Resort, helping Willmar win the section championship. Eric Morken/Alexandria Echo-Press

“The girls really responded to the pressure and stepped up when it counted most,” Willmar head coach Eric Hjelden said. “We had some ups and downs this season, but the girls really focused both mentally on their training the last two weeks.”

The boys won with 71 points to finish ahead of Pequot Lakes (90), which also heads to state. Alexandria (95) was third. New London-Spicer took ninth.

Willmar ninth-grader Sully Anez won the section championship with a time of 16 minutes, 23.8 seconds on the 5-kilometer course. Colin O’Farrell finished third in 16:56.80.

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The top six individuals not on the top two teams qualify for the state meet Nov. 6 at St. Olaf College in Northfield.

In the girls’ race, Willmar scored 45 points to edge Alexandria (55) and Rocori (62). New London-Spicer finished ninth with 232 points.

The girls’ section champion is Albany’s Olivia Goebel, who finished in 18:25.10. Willmar’s Lauren Eilers was second in 18:40.30. Her sister Erin Eilers finished sixth in 19:11.80. Nina Dawson was ninth in 19:35.60.

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Willmar's Erin Eilers finished sixth in the Section 8AA championships on Thursday, Oct. 28, in Alexandria. Eric Morken/Alexandria Echo-Press

Hjelden noted that Willmar’s fourth and fifth runners were extremely important in the Cardinals’ dual championships.

“The kids have put in a lot of miles, tough speed workouts, and (had) a long season,” Hjelden said. “But I am proud that all their hard work paid off.”

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Willmar's Madi Engstrom finished 13th overall at the Section 8AA championships on Thursday, Oct. 28, in Alexandria. Eric Morken/Alexandria Echo-Press

The state cross-country championship meet take place on Saturday, Nov. 6 at St. Olaf College in Northfield. The Class AA boys will run at 2:30 p.m., followed by the girls at 3:30 p.m.

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Section 8AA

Boys

Team scoring

(1) Willmar 71 … (2) Pequot Lakes 90 … (3) Alexandria 95 … (4) Fergus Falls 96 … (5) Rocori 127 … (6) Little Falls 132 … (7) East Grand Forks 140 … (8) Albany 219 … (9) New London-Spicer 234 … (10) Melrose 277 … (11) Thief River Falls 285 … (12) Detroit Lakes 306

Individual

TOP NINE — (1) Sully Anez, Willmar, 16:23.80 … (2) Vincent Kaluza, Rocori, 16:50.90 … (3) Colin O’Farrell, Willmar, 16:56.80 … (4) Jonathan Krueger, East Grand Forks, 16:59.30 … (5) Eli Hall, Pequot Lakes, 17:09.30 … (6) Joel Brault, Alex, 17:16.70 … (7) Jaden Miller, Fergus Falls, 17:25.20 … (8) Wyatt Baum, Little Falls, 17:26.60 … (9) Landon Runge, Alex, 17:37.70
NEW LONDON-SPICER — (20) Jack Barney 18:17.00 … (34) Isaiah Nelson 18:45.00 … (57) Nixon Harrier 19:33.00 … (60) Paul Skretvedt, 19:42.20 … (63) Carson Sampson 19:53.10 … (66) Carson McCain 20:05.10 … (68) Henry Vetsch 20:17.00
WILLMAR— (1) Anez 16:23.80 … (3) O’Farrell 16:56.80 … (14) Ryan Kuhlman 18:05.10 … (26) Kory Behm 18:36.00 … (27) Brandan Zepeda 18:37.20 … (45) Eli Heinen 19:06.60 … (46) Isaac Eichhorst 19:09.40

Girls

Team scoring

(1) Willmar 45 … (2) Alexandria 55 … (3) Rocori 62 … (4) Pequot Lakes 134 ... (5) Little Falls .160 … (6) Albany 185 … (7) Fergus Falls 187 … (8) Detroit Lakes 208 … (9) New London-Spicer 232 … (10) Thief River Falls 245 … (11) Melrose 269 … (12) East Grand Forks 314

Individual

TOP FIVE — (1) Olivia Goebel, Albany, 18:25.10 … (2) Lauren Eilers, Willmar, 18:40.30 … (3) Calia Chaney, Pequot Lakes, 18:42.20 … (4) Aleah Miller, Alex, 18:50.90 … (5) Emma Ecker, Alex, 19:08.50 … (6) Erin Eilers, Willmar, 19:11.80 … (7) Elise Hofer, Rocori, 19:15.40 … (8) Laina Viere, Rocori, 19:24.30 … (9) Nina Dawson, Willmar, 19:35.60 … (10) Ava Larsen, Rocori, 19:37.20 … (11) Cassie Wellman, Fergus Falls, 19:46.40
NEW LONDON-SPICER — (32) Peyton Dahl 21:27.20 … (41) Halle Steffensen 22:27.70 … (44) Stella Moline 22:31.30 … (57) Emersyn Hagen 23:21.60 … (58) Emily Gratton 23:21.60 … (66) Ava Steffensen 23:53.80 … (77) Mady Woelfel, 25:13.30
WILLMAR — (2) L. Eilers 18:40.30 … (6) E. Eilers 19:11.80 … (9) Dawson 19:35.60 … (13) Madi Engstrom 20:01.30 … (15) Lyndi Koosman 20:13.30 … (29) Hannah Quinn 21:14.60 … (39) Sophia Quinn 22:16.20.

Section 3A

The Lac qui Parle Valley/Dawson-Boyd boys won the Section 3A championship at the Madison Golf Course.

The boys won the section title with 75 points to edge Luverne, which had 81 and is also headed to the state meet Nov. 6 at St. Olaf College in Northfield.

Luverne’s Camden Janizeski is the boys’ section champion with a time of 16 minutes, 40.70 seconds.

Girls results were unavailable.

Boys

Team scoring

(1) Lac qui Parle Valley/Dawson Boyd 75 … (2) Luverne 81 … (3) Canby/Minneota 93 … (4) Redwood Valley 127 … (5) Jackson County Central 140 … (6) Windom Area 141 … (7) Mountain Lake Area/Comfrey 186 … (8) Springfield/Cedar Mountain 247 … (9) Pipestone Area 261 … (10) Murray County Central 281 … (11) Montevideo 303 … (12) BOLD/Buffalo Lake-Hector-Stewart 362 … (13) Adrian/Ellsworth 368 … (12) Southwest Minnesota Christian/Edgerton 408 … (16) Heron Lake-Okabena 413 … (17) Lakeview, Central Minnesota Christian 425 … (19) Russell-Tyler-Ruthton 505 … (20) Wabasso 534 .. (inc) MACCRAY/Renville County West, Yellow Medicine East, Heron Lake-Okabena

Individual

TOP 11 — (1) Camden Janiszeski, Luverne, 16:40.70 … (2) Owen Janiszeski, Luverne, 16:47.94 … (3) Will Ahrens, RV, 16:49.26 … (4) Payton Sterud, LQPV, 16:55.03 … (5) Andrew Boyum, JCC, 17:04.63 … (6) Zach Ourada, C/M, 17:06.13 … (7) Caden Strasser, Pipestone, 17:13.21 … (8) Tim Salentiny, Heron Lake-Okabena, 17:14.72 … (9) Kolton Duis, C/M, 17:19.48 … (10) Evan Paplow, JCC, 17:24.69 … (11) Camden Cilek, RV, 17:28.75
BOLD/BLHS — (39) Niko Garcia 18:42.44 … (50) Daniel Frank 19:00.39 … (84) Carter Macik 20:17.81 … (94) Jack Iverson 21:04.28 … (100) Craig Lothert 21:21.60 … (106) Alec Oldre 21:27.92 … (107) Tegan Jansen 21:29.17
CMCS — (28) Timothy Brouwer 18:16.92 … (59) Sam Zwart 19:27.92 …(93) Kaiden Ruis 20:55.35 … (123) Gabe Honken 23:28.21 … (124) Isaac Asche 23:29.22
LQPV/D-B — (4) Sterud 16:55.03 … (13) Mason Brehmer 17:37.30 … (18) Kaiden Allpress 17:47.73 … (19) Eli Hegland 17:55.82 … (21) Gavin Carl 18:01.31 … (40) Taden Clark 18:42.82 … (53) Tygan Allpress 18:47.45
MACCRAY/RCW — (89) Ryan Schrupp 20:35.05 … (102) Isaiah Schroeder 21:22.69
MONTEVIDEO — (53) Brady Andrews 19:16.03 … (56) Carson Lynner 19:25.03 ... (62) Connor Walz 19:31.94 … (66) Blake Andrews 19:37.47 … (69) Braden Nelson 19:52.68 … (82) Dain Winters 20:08.76 … (83) Zakariya Carson 20:09.33
YME — (108) Ean Clarke 21:32.63 … (120) Connor Olson 22:57.26

Girls

Team scoring

(1) Luverne 50 … (2) Murray County Central 69 … (3) Canby/Minneota 78 … (4) Redwood Valley 106 … (5) Springfield/Cedar Mountain 133 … (6) Pipestone Area 174 … (7) Adrian/Ellsworth 232 … (8) Lac qui Parle Valley/Dawson-Boyd 233 … (9) Jackson County Central 260 … (10) Central Minnesota Christian/Community Christian 286 … (11) Southwest Christian/Edgerton 300 … (12) Windom Area 309 … (13) Mountain Lake Area/Comfrey 319 … (14) Russell-Tyler-Ruthton 408 … (15) Yellow Medicine East 428 … (16) Wabasso 439 … (17) Tracy-Milroy-Balaton 445 … (18) Montevideo 513

Individual

TOP FIVE — (1) Amanda Overgaauw, MCC, 18:01.58 … (2) Tenley Nelson, Luverne, 18:31.63 … (3) Jenna DeBates, Luverne, 18:46.44 … (4) Ashley Overgaauw, MCC, 18:51.92 … (5) Kaylee Walklin, Windom, 18:52.88.
STATE QUALIFIERS — (5) Walklin … (6) Grace Drietz, Canby/Minneota, 19:26.54 … (7) Claire Stoks, Canby/Minneota, 19:50.20 … (8) Braelyn Merritt, Canby/Minneota, 20:05.41 … (10) Taylor Post, Pipestone, 20:23.53 … (12) Olivia Anderson, Jackson County Central, 20:34.99.
CMCS/CCS — (18) Sidney Duininck 21:07.80 … (45) Natasha Erickson 22:36.37 … (63) Maggie Setrum 23:22.56 … (80) Gabby Pederson 24:11.37 … (84) Ashlyn Brouwer 24:18.19
BOLD/BLHS — (33) Kenna Henriksen 22:11.48 … (121) Grace McDonnell 27:00.53
LQPV/D-B — (28) Anika Fernholz 21:44.64 … (39) Mya Conroy 22:23.68 … (49) Taylor Shelstad 22:44.52 … (60) Taylor Wood 23:15.35 … (62) Chloe Gloege 23:21.88 … (69) Reese Ochsendorf 23:33.91 … (75) Kendall Johnson 23:58.87
MONTEVIDEO — (97) Katherine Halterman 24:53.31 … (106) Brenna Winters 25:32.98 … (107) Meg Wanke 25:35.93 … (108) Brooke DeJong 25:36.97 … (110) Emily Valenzuela 25:38.10 … (127) Angela Padilla 28:05.18
YME — (41) Anjali Pullan 22:25.68 … (54) Sanjan Pullan 22:58.34 … (111) Violet Anderson 25:41.05 … (116) Karina Jahn 26:26.95 … (126) Anderson Izabella 27:42.51

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Willmar ninth-grader Sully Anez is the 2021 Section 8AA champion after winning the race in 16 minutes, 23.8 seconds Thursday, Oct. 28 at Alexandria. Willmar won the section title at Arrowwood Resort. Eric Morken/Alexandria Echo-Press

Related Topics: LOCAL SPORTSWILLMAR CARDINALSBOLD WARRIORSBBE JAGUARSNEW WILLMAR CARDINALS NEW
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