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Iowa cross country: Seivert claims silver at state

DREW HERRON/ATLANTIC NEWS-TELEGRAPH Sibley-Ocheyedan senior Leah Seivert, left, races Griswold's Rebekah Topham during Saturday's state cross country meet in Fort Dodge. Seivert finished with second place in 14:10.

Seivert ran neck and neck with Griswold’s Rebekah Topham through much of the 4K distance’s early goings.

In the final 800 meters of the 4K race, Topham pulled away to clinch her third championship in 13:56. Seivert’s time of 14:10 became her fastest time through all four of her appearances at state. The time also puts Seivert as the state’s fourth best runner across all classes. She paced Sibley-Ocheyedan’s girls team, which took 15th in its first trip to state in 14 years.

“I thought Leah ran a really, really good race. Every year she has improved at state,” Generals cross country coach Keith Swenson said over the phone Saturday night. “She and Rebekah were running stride-for-stride. I mean they left everybody else in the dust.

“It was just a two person race and at the end, Rebekah pulled away to finish first,” Swenson added. “It was a really gutsy race and it was a good hard run for Leah.”

Rounding out S-O’s scoring, freshman Makayla Tangeman placed 61st (17:36.8), senior Kim Cuadros claimed 84th (18:30), Jada Carlson took 96th (19:07) and senior Marie Jeppesen claimed 98th (19:30). Moments later in the boys 5K race, S-O sophomore Andy Taverna took 87th overall, checking in at 18:46.

“As I always say, we’re going to do the best we can. Whatever happens happens,” Swenson said. “It was a good experience. Leah had four good years of cross country and these other girls got to run at state this year. It was just a good experience.

“Andy ran a gutsy race. For him and for those freshman girls who made it, it is always good to get that first year in and get that good experience (at state).” 

Caleb Nelson
Caleb Nelson is the Daily Globe sports writer. He hails from southwest Iowa and served as sports editor at the Audubon County Advocate Journal there for 2 ½ years before moving to Worthington in October 2013. Caleb trys to enjoy life and everybody that he meets. He enjoys music, playing guitar and drums, and is an avid sports fan. 
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