On an extremely balmy afternoon, The West Central Area Knights ran their first cross country meet in Morris on Monday.
The WCA boys finished the meet in first place led by Senior Ryley Nelsonfinishing in first and freshman teammate Jacob Bright right behind him in second.
“That was a huge advantage for us to have our top two in placing where they did,” stated VanKempen. “Our three, four and five runners finished in 14th (Ethan Olson), 15th (Jack Van Kempen) and 16th (Drake Swanson). Those guys did an excellent job of sticking together and running in a pack. They ran for our team at state last year and that experience has helped them to have that pack mentality when racing. They finished the meet last year in second place by two points and they didn’t want to let that happen again.”
The girls varsity ran with only three, Ella VanKempen led the charge in 14th place, followed by Teagan Nelson in 27th and Brynn Fernholz in 28th. “We will be running a full squad in upcoming meets and we should be more competitive as the season progresses,” added VanKempen.
The Knights had five boys running the JV race, Austin Clavin, Matt Poyzer, Tim Ruud, Brett Duncan, and Chris Onstad.
The seventh graders were led by Reubens Swanson in first and Kade Runge in second. Alex Salwasser in 8th, Shad Swanson in 31st and Tyler Biss in 33rd.Kyle Schill led the 8th graders in 4th place, Jacob Brown in 10th and Gaven Raden in 13th.
Lexi Bright led the seventh grade girls with a first place finish followed byKaitlyn Hanson in 10th and Kennedy Porter in 14th. The eighth grade girls hadChloe LaRue in 8th and Carly Steiner in 15th.
“We have a very good junior high group that will be vying for some varsity spots as the season progresses,” noted Head Coach John VanKempen.
The next meet for the Knights will be Thursday in Breckenridge.