Meinecke places fourth for Cub girls in first varsity race: Nevada boys take sixth at Dutch Invite
PELLA - The Nevada girls produced a top-five individual runner and the Cub boys had one runner place in the top 20 in the Large School Class at the Dutch Invitational Saturday.
Freshman Tori Meinecke had an amazing debut for the Cub girls in their first meet of the year. She ran a 5-kilometer time of 21 minutes, 15.0 seconds to place fourth out of 123 runners in the Large School Class.
“Tori Meinecke ran a solid first race of her high school cross country career,” Nevada head girls’ cross country coach Shawn Crain said. “She fought to the very end in some strong competition for her first varsity race.”
Norwalk’s Breelie Mauro won in 20:32.4 and her teammate Kiana Vogel finished just ahead of Meinecke in third with a 21:14.5 showing. Pella’s Abigail Cutler was second in 21:03.8.
As a team Nevada scored 139 points to place fifth out of eight schools in the Large School Class. Norwalk dominated the team standings with 22 points, Pella was second with 66, North Polk third with 79 and Bondurant-Farrar fifth with 135.
“I was very pleased with all of our runners today,” Crain said. “I know our top varsity spots will be challenged all season. This group is very supportive of each other and will be fighting for those spots. The weather was perfect on a challenging course and our runners attacked well today. I'm excited to see what's next with each meet on the schedule for our team.”
Senior leader Eleanor Elliott-Rude was just outside the top 20 for Nevada with a 22nd-place time of 23:06.1. Allison Kruzich came in 42nd at 24:44.7, Bridget Cahill 45th at 24:59.1 and Tatum Hendricks 48th at 25:07.4 as the other runners to score for the Cub girls.
Grace Cahill was just outside the scoring cut with a 60th-place time of 25:50.4. Grace Heiden took 64th in 26:08.0.
In the boys’ competition Nevada scored 161 points to finish sixth, 12 points behind Oskaloosa’s fifth-place score. Norwalk also won the boys’ Large School team title with 31 points, Pella took second with 45, North Polk third with 55 and Gilbert a distant fourth with 145.
Sophomore Owen Freeman placed 20th to lead the Cub boys. He crossed the finish line in 18:18.6.
Luis Lopez ended up 26th in 18:36.8 as the second Cub runner to finish the boys’ race. Rhett Harter took 34th in 18:54.6, Eliot Frideres 45th in 19:31.7 and Nick Frideres 49th in 19:43.5 to complete the scoring for the Nevada boys.
“I'm happy with our improvements over last year,” Nevada head boys’ cross country coach James Mills said. “Owen Freeman finished in the top 20 in a competitive meet. As I predicted early this season, Luis made dramatic gains over last year - dropping a 1:20 off of his time. Rhett Harter had a great breakout performance for his first high school meet. He will be fun to watch grow throughout the season.”
Rowan Steele came in 77th in 20:22.0 and Frank Engstrom 111th in 21:31.0 as the other varsity competitors for the Cub boys.
Pella’s Josiah Wittenberg was the Large School boys’ individual champion at the meet with a time of 16:26.5. Norwalk’s Derek Webster was second in 16:52.7 and North Polk’s Zach Sporaa came in just behind Webster with a 16:53.8 showing.
Final Large School team scores
Girls: 1. Norwalk 22 points, 2. Pella 66, 3. North Polk 79, 4. Bondurant-Farrar 135, 5. Nevada 139, 6. Mount Pleasant 141, 7. Oskaloosa 186, 8. Knoxville 205.
Boys: 1. Norwalk 31, 2. Pella 45, 3. North Polk 55, 4. Gilbert 145, 5. Oskaloosa 149, 6. Nevada 161, 7. Bondurant-Farrar 179, 8. Mount Pleasant 193, 9. Knoxville 262.
Individual results (5-kilometer) - Nevada
Girls: 4. Tori Meinecke, 21:15.0; 22. Eleanor Elliott-Rude, 23:06.1; 42. Allison Kruzich, 24:44.7; 45. Bridget Cahill, 24:59.1; 48. Tatum Hendricks, 25:07.4; 60. Grace Cahill, 25:50.4; 64. Grace Heiden, 26:08.0.
Boys: 20. Owen Freeman, 18:18.6; 26. Luis Lopez, 18:36.8; 34. Rhett Harter, 18:54.6; 45. Eliot Frideres, 19:31.7; 49. Nick Frideres, 19:43.5; 77. Rowan Steele, 20:22.0; 111. Frank Engstrom, 21:31.0.