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Cross country: Cardinal girls win in Luverne; Runck leads MLA boys team victory

BY LES KNUTSON The Globe LUVERNE -- Putting three runners among the top seven overall finishers, Luverne's varsity girls impressively won Saturday's Bruce Gluf Classic 10-team high school cross country meet. Currently ranked seventh in the Class ...

BY LES KNUTSON

The Globe                                                                              

LUVERNE -- Putting three runners among the top seven overall finishers, Luverne’s varsity girls impressively won Saturday’s Bruce Gluf Classic 10-team high school cross country meet.

Currently ranked seventh in the Class A state poll, the Cardinals first five placed 3-4-6-10-11 in the team scoring and claimed the title with a low score of 34 points, 21 points better than second-place Beresford, S.D.

In the boys’ team chase, Mountain Lake Area (2-5-6-17-18) edged Martin County West (3-7-13-14-15) by four points, 48-52.

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Leading the Wolverines victory was the second-place performance of senior Nathan Runck, the state’s 12th-ranked Class A boy, who completed the challenging 5,000-meter course in 17:33.1.

Following Runck for MLA were juniors Dalton Piotter (fifth, 18:02.1) and Ryan Blomgren (sixth, 18:06.0).

Beresfords’ Alec Atwood was the individual winner, clocking a time of 16:49.9.

Other area boys finishing among the top 15 included Luverne juniors Dalton DeSollar (ninth, 18:27.7) and Shane Berning (11th, 18:40.4).

A total of 45 runners finished the varsity boys’ race and six teams had complete scores. Beresford was third with 64 points, followed by Luverne (88), Dell Rapids, S.D. (96) and Jackson County Central (159).

JCC’s first finisher was senior Isaac Johnson (24th, 19:37.1).

Luverne’s girls were led by the trio of freshman Regan Feit (third, 20:16.8), eighth-grader Tenley Nelson (fourth, 20:19.1) and eighth-grader Brooklyn VerSteeg (seventh, 21:17.7). Completing the scoring for the Cardinals were junior Gabrielle Ferrell (13th overall, 10 team points, 22:02.1) and freshman Cassie Flanagan (16, 11, 22:31.0).

Beresford’s Cait Savey repeated as the girls’ individual champion with a spectacular time of 18:47.6, while MCW freshman Marissa Whitehead --- ranked eighth among Minnesota’s Class A girls --- was second with a time of 19:58.3.

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JCC senior Jessica Christoffer finished fifth (20:38.9) and MLA eighth-grader Mercedes Saengosoth was 12th (22:00.7).

Dell Rapids was third in the girls’ team standings with 71 points, followed by MCW (101), Southwest Minnesota Christian (112) and MLA (148). JCC, West Lyon (Iowa), Garretson (S.D.) and Hendricks were each incomplete.

Freshman Mikayla Johnson (19th, 13, 22:48.0) paced SW Christian. A total of 53 girls completed the varsity race.

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