AMES - The Nevada cross country teams both placed in the top 10 against tough competition in Class A at the Gilbert Invitational Aug. 29 on the Iowa State cross country course.
The Cub girls took eighth and the boys 10th out of 14 scored teams in Class A. No official times were recorded due to a scoring system crash, except for the individual winners.
In the girls’ race Nevada scored 224 points. Ballard, the No. 3 team in Class 3A, won with 29 points and No. 2 DCG took second with 37 points. The Cubs had five runners place in the top 70.
“Our whole team was a little on edge coming into it,” Nevada senior Eliana Hornbuckle said. “But from what I’ve seen, everyone pretty much made it through it and the season only gets better from here. It was a good dip in the water — we have a lot of people that haven’t raced a 5k before.”
Hornbuckle turned in the top effort for Nevada. She placed 25th overall in a loaded field.
“I’m not gonna lie — I was a little nervous coming into it,” Hornbuckle said. “Compared to last year with (former) coach (Mike) Christiansen, we ran a lot more. This year, coach (Shawn) Crain has us training a lot smarter — not necessarily as many miles. So I was a little uneasy about being not quite prepared. But I did OK.”
Sophomore Elie Tuhn was the second Cub to cross the finish line, coming in 30th. Freshman Allison Kruzich came in 54th, Eleanor Elliot-Rude took 59th and Grace Cahill 68th as the other Cub runners to score points.
Bridget Cahill finished 109th and Meredith Harter 114th for the Cub girls.
Ballard freshman Shewaye Johnson won the Class A girls’ individual title with a 5-kilometer time of 20 minutes, 11 seconds.
In the boys’ competition, Nevada scored 287 points. DCG, the No. 6 team in 3A, won with 46 points, Norwalk was second with 71 and No. 2 Gilbert placed third with 82.
“I thought it was a good night overall,” Nevada head boys’ cross country coach James Mills said. “I’m sure my top runners would have liked to see faster times, but it’s early in the season and it was a hot and hilly race. I have a couple of freshmen and other new members that had decent times.”
“I’m happy how my guys raced as a team,” Mills said. “They stuck near each other and pushed each other on. My top six all finished within a minute of each other. A few of my JV runners also set new personal bests.”
Elliot Frideres was the first runner to finish the 5-kilometer race for the Nevada boys. Frideres placed 48th.
Dean Check finished 55th, Owen Freeman 61st, Luis Lopez-Perez 66th and Caleb Pawlovich 78th as the other runners to earn points for the Cubs. Nick Frideres and Marcus Nelson also counted as varsity runners, placing 81st and 118th respectively.
DCG’s Aidan Ramsey ran a 5-kilometer time of 17:02 to win the Class A boys’ individual title.
Final Class A team scores
Girls: 1. Ballard 29 points, 2. DCG 37, 3. Norwalk 117, 4. Gilbert 126, 5. Gilbert 171, 6. Bondurant-Farrar 213, 7. Newton 214, 8. Nevada 224, 9. Roland-Story 227, 10. PCM 264, 11. Greene County 321, 12. Des Moines North 335, 13. Kuemper Catholic 372, 14. Boone 374.
Boys: 1. DCG 46, 2. Norwalk 71, 3. Gilbert 82, 4. North Polk 101, 5. Bondurant-Farrar 159, 6. Ballard 181, 7. Newton 215, 8. Roland-Story 222, 9. Kuemper Catholic 238, 10. Nevada 287, 11. Boone 307, 12. PCM 308, 13. Greene County 318, 14. Des Moines Hoover 395.
Individual places - Nevada (no times available)
Girls: 25. Eliana Hornbuckle, 30. Elie Tuhn, 54. Allison Kruzich, 59. Eleanor Elliott-Rude, 68. Grace Cahill, 109. Bridget Cahill, 114. Meredith Harter.
Boys: 48. Elliot Frideres, 55. Dean Check, 61. Owen Freeman, 66. Luis Lopez-Perez, 78. Caleb Pawlovich, 81. Nick Frideres, 118. Marcus Nelson.