Ankeny qualifies for State Meet
A season full of practice and preparation allowed for one Blue Earth Area Cross Country runner to qualify for the State Meet, held each year at St. Olaf College in Northfield.
The Bucs vied for a top spot in last Thursday’s Section 2A Championship held at Riverside Country Club, their home course.
“This is the big one, the meet we train for and strive to peak for each season,” said head coach Tom Plocker. “We believe racing on our home course in a championship meet gives BEA a big boost. Over the years, the Bucs have had six boys or girls teams and many individuals qualify for State at our Riverside home course.”
According to Plocker, senior Mike Ankeny posted his best-ever time on the home course at last Thursday’s Championship, which led to an All-Section award and a spot in the State Meet.
Of a whopping 21 teams competing at this year’s championship, the Buccaneer varsity boys came in 10th while the varsity girls came in 13th.
Fourteen boys and girls varsity runners competed as individuals, the girls kicking off the race at 4 p.m. followed by the boys at 4:45 p.m.
Several of those athletes improved their time from the 2013 Section meet:
Zach Vaske, up 17 spots; Seth Becker, up 53 spots; Adam Buseman, up 23 spots; and Mariah Halvorson, up 36 spots.
As for the other Buccaneers who competed at the Riverside Country Club, sunshine and 60-degree weather put them in the running mood.
Boys individual 5K:
Mike Ankeny, 13th, 17:23; Zach Vaske, 28th, 18:00; Seth Becker, 62nd, 18:58; Brady Olsen, 81st, 19:28; Alan Davids, 93rd, 19:44; Adam Buseman, 94th, 19:46; and Alex Benson, 113th, 20:29.
Girls individual 4K:
Mariah Halvorson, 42nd, 16:58; Marissa Waddell, 66th, 17:33; Shayna Stevermer, 72nd, 17:49; Taylor Grandgenett, 81st, 18:05; Callie Stevermer, 83rd, 18:08, Melissa Hagedorn, 99th, 18:49; and alternate Athena Peterson, 109th, 19:53.
Of the 21 teams competing at last Thursday’s race, only three will advance to state Martin County West boys varsity, Fairmont girls varsity and Waseca boys and girls varsity.
Ankeny will compete in the State Meet individually Saturday, Nov. 1, at St. Olaf College in Northfield.