Members of the Minnewaska girls cross-country team hold the championship trophy at the WCC Meet. From left to right are Piper Citrowske, Sydney Ankeny, Kiearra Wilmes, Elsey Hagen and Aubrey Stark. In back are Lauryn Ankeny and Teagan Stark.

The Minnewaska Area girls cross-country team won its second-straight title and fourth of the season in winning the WCC Cross-Country title last Monday at BOLD.  The Lakers won by 16 points over runner-up Melrose in the girls’ competition, while the boys’ team finished as runner-up behind WCC champion Sauk Centre.

Lauryn Ankeny placed second for the girls, while Kiearra Wilmes was fourth and Elsey Hagen eighth, and in the boys’ race, Maeson Tank was second, Nick Ankeny was 13th and Zach Palmer 14th.

Earning All-Conference by placing in the top-9 for the Lakers were Lauryn Ankeny, Kiearra Wilmes, Elsey Hagen and Maeson Tank, while Aubrey Stark and Nick Ankeny were honorable mention.

Next up for the Lakers is  the Section 6A Boys and Girls Cross-County Meet, set for Friday, Oct. 28.  The top runners and top two teams advance to the State Cross-Country Meet, set for Saturday, Nov. 5 at St. Olaf College.

“We feel we are running well right now and peaking at the perfect time for our section meet,” coach Jennifer Johnsrud said.  “We are up for the challenge and are hoping to qualify some kids for the next level of competition.”

at WCC Meet

The Laker girls had six runners finish in the top 20 to earn the WCC team title last Monday at BOLD during cold and windy conditions.  The Lakers finished with 41 points, while Melrose Area was second with 57, followed by West Central Area (60), Morris area (87), Sauk Centre (136), Benson-KMS (158) and Montevideo (203).

Hailey Werk, of Morris Area, won the individual title with a time of 19:59, while Lauryn Ankeny finished second for the Lakers with a time of 20:28.  “Lauryn has run under 20 minutes twice this season (at Milbank and Perham) and we’re hoping she runs that again next week at sections.  Cool temperatures are great, but we could do without the wind.”

Kiearra Wilmes was right behind with a time of 20:50 to place fourth, followed on the Laker team by Elsey Hagen in eighth (21:28), Aubrey Stark in 13th (22:10), Piper Citrowske in 14th (22:10), Teagan Stark in 20th (23:03) and Sydney Ankeny in 24th place (23:32) out of 46 total runners.

Wilmes and Hagen are seniors, while Teagan Stark is a junior, Lauryn Ankeny, Citrowske and Aubrey Stark are ninth-graders and Sydney Ankeny is a seventh-grader.

Last year, the Lakers also won the girls’ WCC title before going on to place second at sections and seventh in the Class A State Meet.

In the boys’ race, Brandon Kampsen, of Sauk Centre, won the individual time with an incredible time of 15:56, while Maeson Tank was second for the Lakers with a time of 17:25.

Nick Ankeny added a time of 18:44 to place 13th, while Zach Palmer was 14th (18:48), Ian Mills was 23rd (19:17), Jayce Kovarik was 27th (19:37), Carter Dinsmore was 41st (20:26) and James Ward was 49th (21:02).

Ward and Ankeny are seniors on the boys’ team, while Kovarik and Tank are juniors, Palmer and Mills are sophomores and Dinsmore is a ninth-grader.

Sauk Centre had two of the top four runners on the way to winning the team title with 53 points, while the Lakers were second with 73 points, followed by Montevideo in third (76), WCA in fourth (81), Melrose Area in fifth (88), Morris Area in sixth (130) and Benson-KMS in seventh (140).

•  Minnewaska Area had four athletes in the 13-runner JV girls’ race of 5,000 meters won by Kelley Jansen, of BOLD-BLH, in 22:52.  Alexx Carlson was fourth (25:14), Izzy Bautista was sixth (25:51), Autumn Hess was ninth (27:03) and Molly Hjelm was 11th (29:02) in their final high school race.

In the boys’ JV competition, there were 60 runners and Sauk Centre had the top six finishers, including Harry Dunn, who won the race with a time of 19:07.

Chase Wacker was 19th (21:21), Jaden Anderson was 20th (21:25), Ryan Koehntop was 41st (23:07) and Caden Manderschied was 43rd (23:32) for the Lakers.

•  In the junior high races of 2,500 meters, Emma Koehntop placed seventh (12:39) of 14 runners in a race won by Erika Martinson, of BOLD-BLH, in 10:52.

In the boys’ junior high race of 29 runners, Owen Greene finished third overall (10:26) and Rylan Tank was 14th (11:07) in a race won by Morris Area’s Wesley Richards in 9:59.

WCC Meet at BOLD

Girls varsity team results:  (1) Minnewaska Area 41  (2) Melrose Area 57  (3) West Central Area 60  (4) Morris Area-CA 87  (5) Sauk Centre 136  (6) Benson-KMS 158  (7) Montevideo 203

Girls top five:  (1) Hailey Werk, Morris 19:59  (2) Lauryn Ankeny, Min 20:28  (3) Kayla Meyer, Mel 20:35  (4) Kiearra Wilmes, Min 20:50  (5) Kendall Fischer, Mor 20:51

Minnewaska Area times:   (2) Lauryn Ankeny 20:28  (4) Kiearra Wilmes 20:50  (8) Elsey Hagen 21:28  (13) Aubrey Stark 22:10  (14) Piper Citrowske 22:10  (20) Teagan Stark 23:03  (24) Sydney Ankeny 23:32  . . . 46 total runners

Boys varsity team results:  (1) Sauk Centre 53  (2) Minnewaska Area 73  (3) Montevideo 76  (4) West Central Area 81  (5) Melrose Area 88  (6) Morris Area-CA 130  (7) Benson-KMS 140

Boys top five:  (1) Brandon Kampsen, SC 15:56  (2) Maeson Tank, Min 17:25  (3) Roman Mihailovschi, WCA 17:28  (4) Jacob Drevlow, SC 17:32  (5) Brady Andrews, Monte 17:54

Minnewaska Area times:   (2) Maeson Tank 17:25  (13) Nick Ankeny 18:44  (14) Zach Palmer 18:48  (23) Ian Mills 19:17  (27) Jayce Kovarik 19:37  (41) Carter Dinsmore 20:26  (49) James Ward 21:02 . . 52 runners