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BEA & USC compete at state

By Staff | Nov 12, 2017

Grant Strukel poses with his BEA coach, Tom Plocker.

The Cross Country State Championship was held on Saturday, Nov. 4, at St. Olaf College in Northfield.

Blue Earth Area Buccaneer sophomore Grant Strukel qualified for State and placed 27th out of 176 runners with a personal-best time of 16:49 in his second consecutive State meet appearance.

“Grant improved by a superlative 27 places and 20 seconds from his ’16 showing,” said head coach Tom Plocker. “He was much more relaxed and confident in his second trip to ‘the big dance.'”

Plocker shares Strukel started well, cruising into 45th place at the 1-mile mark. He then climbed through the ranks gradually to 35th place in the remote second-mile loop.

“With 600 meters to go, Grant charged down the hill and unleashed a big surge to the finish, claiming the No. 27 spot, just two places away from All-State honors,” says Plocker. “He was Section 2A’s No. 4 finisher and also earned academic all-state honors as a result of his Section finish and quality GPA.”

Beth Stevermer, a senior at United South Central, also earned a spot at the State meet and placed 37th out of 174 runners with a time of 19:57.