Senior Lexi Willems and sophomore Alex Carrabre will represent Waconia this weekend at the Class AA state cross country meet, Nov. 2 at St. Olaf College, after qualifying during the Section 2AA championships last week in Buffalo.
Also at Buffalo, both the boys’ and girls’ cross country teams were recognized for their academic achievements. The Waconia girls earned the Gold standard for having an average team grade point average of 3.96, while the boys earned the Silver standard for an average team GPA of 3.74.
“This is a huge step forward for distance running for Waconia and as the head coach, I’m blown away by the performance of my athletes this year during our championship season,” WHS head coach Christian Gilbert said. “I have never witnessed this type of energy from my athletes and all varsity members left everything on the course in Buffalo.”
Led by Willems’ 11th place finish (15:20.9), the WHS girls finished fifth of 14 teams behind team champion Chanhassen. Sophomore Carissa Dock finished 18th overall in 15:54.1 and missed the state cut by just one position. Junior Alora rands finished 34th overall in 16:25.7. Seventh grader Madison Denzer and senior Katherine Jensen finished just 11 seconds apart, in 60th and 65th positions at 17 minutes flat (Denzer) and 17:11.9 (Jensen). Junior Mikaela Kauma was 78th (17:36.5) and senior Kortney Luedloff (17:51) was 83rd.
The Wildcat boys were 14th of 15 teams behind team champion Hutchinson. Carrabre finished 12th overall, grabbing the last individual state entry with his time of 16:57.9.
Seventh grader Kal McDonough was 68th overall in 18:27.5, while senior Tony Fulkerson (19:06.8) and freshman Jack Kappal (19:07.2) both finished in the top 100 in 89th and 90th places. Sophomores Josh Rands, Travis Kray, and Parker Roehl crossed the line together in 100-102 positions with times of 19:45.2, 19:45.6, and 19:45.9.
The Class AA state cross country meet is this Saturday, Nov. 2 at St. Olaf College in Northfield. The girls’ race begins at 10 a.m. with the boys at 11 a.m.
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