Park cross country: 2011 running season ends for WolfpackThe Park boys and girls cross country teams ran their last meet of the season at the sectional meet on Wednesday, Oct. 26, at the University of Minnesota golf course.
By: Teresa Townsend, South Washington County Bulletin
The Park boys and girls cross country teams ran their last meet of the season at the sectional meet on Wednesday, Oct. 26, at the University of Minnesota golf course. The girls finished 10th and the boys 11th out of 15 teams in each race.
The girls totaled 269 points. Cameron Anderson finished first for Park girls with a time of 15:47. Coming in 26th place overall, putting her 15 places away from making the state meet, “which isn’t bad for your eighth grade year,” said Park head coach Mike Moran. “She ran really well.”
Park’s next runner, Bailey Aasen, made her third-best time of the year at 16:20, finishing 45th overall. “I think she was complaining about being in the worst race of the year,” Moran said. “I think it’s a positive if you run that well and you think it’s a bad day.”
Rebekah Schulte finished third for Park and 57th overall with a time of 16:34. She was followed by Larissa Lurken, who finished in 60th place with a time of 16:40. Brooke Anderson finished fifth for Park with a time of 17:24 and 81st place overall.
Eagan’s girls came in first with 44 points, their first runner was also the first place runner, junior Danielle Anderson, who finished with a time of 14:26. Prior Lake came in second with 69 points, their first finisher placed fourth with a time of 14:44.
The Park boys received 300 points for the meet. Evan Bonneson finished first for Park at 17:13 receiving 29th place overall, putting him 19 places away from the state meet. His time was, “very close to his personal best,” said Moran, adding, “He was not feeling well and on a slower course. At the end of the race he came up to me and said that he really wants to make the state meet. I have no doubt in my mind that when he’s a senior he will.”
Park’s next runner was Joe Pierre, finishing 50th with a time of 17:49.
“He had his second best time of his career,” Moran said. “The last two races were the best two times he ever ran.”
Senior Robert Briggs finished next and achieved his personal best time, 17:51, placing 53rd overall. Cade Fishbaugher finished fourth for Park and 83rd overall with a time of 18:29. Ethan Berube finished fifth for Park at 18:33 and placed 85th overall.
Rosemount placed first for the boys with 58 points, their top runner came in seventh with a time of 16:03. Next was Burnsville with 66 points. Their top runner placed second with a time of 15:50, just a second slower than the first place time of 15:49 earned by Bloomington Jefferson senior Jan Ketterson.
Although Wednesday’s course was much slower than last week’s conference meet, seven runners received their personal best times.
“It was the kind of course that’s harder on people who like running steady,” Moran said. “It’s hilly so you have to change your speed all the time.”
The course was also entirely new to the team.
“There was kind of a problem because I had no idea what the course was going to be like since I haven’t run there in 30 years,” Moran said. The rolling hills slowed runners down across the board, he said. “The kids that won had a fast time,” he said, “just not as fast as last week. The kids adapt pretty well. They do it smartly too, we had enough time to check out the course before the race.”
Wednesday’s meet ended a season filled with personal bests and steady improvement for the teams, but it was too soon for some of the athletes.
“A couple of them had tears in their eyes,” Moran said. “The kids get pretty close. When you run with people you get to know them better than just sitting around.”
In preparation for next season Moran hopes that his teams will continue practicing and join cross country skiing and track, if possible.
“They seem pretty serious,” he said. “The conference we’re in makes you want to do well.”