The STMA Knights cross country team captured both individual titles in the Section 5AA Cross Country Championships on Thursday October 24th at Anoka High School, as Chase Cayo won the Boys 5K and Rachel King and Lizzy Heil went 1-2 in the Girls 4K. Cayo ran a personal best time of 15:46 in winning his 5K race. King also posted a personal best time for the 4K of 14:18, also re-establishing her own school record, while Heil ran a time of 14:26, just 2 seconds off of her personal best time. The Knight boys team placed 4th and the Knight girls placed 5th as a team among the 16 Section 5AA teams. The 3 Knight State qualifiers will compete in the Minnesota State Cross Country Meet on Saturday November 2nd at St. Olaf College in Northfield, where the Girls class “AA” 4K will be contested at 10:00 AM and the Boys 5K race starts at 11:00 AM on the campus of St. Olaf College.
STMA cross country coach, Gregg Greeno, looks upon the State Meet with guarded optimism as he commented, “It’s nice that all 3 runners that we are bringing to State, were there last year, so they have some experience, so that helps. They all have their sights and goals set high, but class “AA” cross country in Minnesota is so competitive, we just hope they feel pretty good that day are ready to compete and race hard.”
Last year’s State Meet saw Rachel King becoming the first-ever STMA female to earn “All-State” status (top 25) in cross country in class “AA” by placing 14th . 12 seconds later, 8th grader Lizzy Heil, became the second “All-State” female in cross country in STMA history, as she placed 23rd. Chase Cayo placed 49th in last year’s State Meet out of field of 180 of the state’s best runners.
At the Section Meet, other varsity boys along with their places and times included: Jake Monseth (18th-16:36), Dominic Shovelain (33rd-17:02), Lukas Layton (34th-17:03), Keith Jorgenson (36th-17:04), Jackson Connelly (46th-17:24), and Christian Eiynck (50th-17:28). Varsity girls besides King and Heil at the Section Meet were: Belle Nyhus (38th-16:01), McKenna Rogers (48th-16:15), Abbie Herbst (60th-16:26), Erin Schindler (93rd-17:11), and Jaymie Hansen (96th-17:26). There was a Junior Varsity Section meet, but team scores were not kept. Top JV boys for the Knights included: Luke Pelant (6th-17:31), Jeremy Goude (17th-17:46), Jake Coulson (20th-18:00), Alec Birk (21st-18:01), and Brian Colgrove (18:21). Top 5 JV girls were: Megan Kucera (28th-17:20), Courtney Schoen (56th-17:54), Cheyenne Vavrina (86th-18:29), Morgan Kessler (128th-19:26), and Jada Brown (153rd-20:05).
The annual STMA Cross Country banquet will be held Tuesday, Nov. 12, at the STMA High School cafeteria. Serving will start at 6:30 PM.