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La Crescent-Hokah’s cross country teams made their annual trek west on Oct. 8 to take part in the seven-team “No Frills” Invitational, hosted by United South Central High School at Oakview Golf Course, just outside of Freeborn, Minn.

The Lancer boys won their second meet of the year, and the girls team placed a strong second.

The first race of the day was the girls varsity competition, and the Lancers found themselves chasing a fast-starting crew from Waterville-Elysian-Morristown/Janesville-Waldord-Pemberton in the opening 1600 meters. While WEMJWP’s Addison Peed kept up her strong initial pace en route to a wire-to-wire victory with a time of 20:37 for the 5,000-meter course, the Lancer trio of Lydia Rosendahl, Katy Steffes and Autumn Rabe started to pick off more and more runners as the race transpired.

Although they came up just short of catching WEMJWP’s second runner, Rosendahl, Rabe and Steffes placed third, fourth and fifth, with respective times of 21:27, 21:44, and 21:49.

Being the first team with three runners in the chute, the Lancer’s advantage was short-lived as WEMJWP had four of the next five finishers, putting six runners in the top ten to cement their 25 point winning point total. Ashley Muenzenberger was 12th in 22:46 and Emma Stavenau 20th in 24:04 to account for the Lancers’ 44 point second place total. New Richland-Hartland-Ellendale-Geneva tallied 73 for third and Tri-City United’s 88 points moved them into fourth of the six complete teams.

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La Crescent-Hokah’s boys faced the same issue as their female teammates, only it was the team from Tri-City United that went off the starting line at breakneck speed.

It took the better part of 3200 meters for Jake Boudreau, Cody Kowalski, Camdan Nolop, and Thomas Lechnir to finally get past all but two of the blue-clad TCU runners and head into the final 1800 meters of switch-backs. As with the girls’ race, TCU’s Austin Antony stretched out his lead to the finish, winning in 17:01. Instead of allowing their opponents to claim the top two spots, Lancer senior Jake Boudreau finished strongly to take second place in 17:26.

After another TCU runner, Nolop, Lechnir, and Kowalski ran 17:42, 17:48, and 18:01 to take fourth through sixth place and give the Lancers four of the first six finishers. Jack Redman placed tenth, ahead of TCU’s third runner, in 18:28 to secure the team win for the Lancers with 27 points, well ahead of TCU’s runner-up total of 52. Medford High School was third with 86 points and WEM/JWP fourth at 99 points, with Blooming Prairie and NRHEG further back and the host Rebels incomplete.

After this past Tuesday’s Three Rivers Conference Meet in Plainview, the Lancers will be preparing for the 23-team Section 1A Championships, which will be held Oct. 24 at Northern Hills Golf Course in Rochester.

The top two teams and top eight individuals not members of the two advancing teams will earn the right to represent the section in the Nov. 2 State Meet at St. Olaf College in Northfield.

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