The Redwood Valley boys and girls cross country teams continued their push towards the Section 3A meet with a strong showing Sept. 26 at the Redwood Valley invitational.
The Cardinal girls varsity captured first place at the event – held at the Redwood Falls Golf Club – holding off Southwest Minnesota Christian (56) and GFW (65) with 40 team points in the seven team race.
All of the Cardinal runners had a painted ‘T’ on their right cheek in honor of friend and classmate Thunder Brothers of All who tragically passed away in a drowning accident.
Standout eighth-grader Maddie LeSage was part of a strong overall effort, as she set a new personal best with a time of 19:50 to place second overall.
Jasmine Barnes (21:21) finished in sixth, and Catherine Buffie (21:36) was ninth. The eighth-grade tandem of Michelle Smith and Olivia Stoterau had a strong outing, as Smith knocked 1:42 off of her personal best to place 11th in 21:56 and Stoterau took 18 seconds off of her previous best to place 12th in 21:59. Grace Caraway (22:29) also set a personal best in placing 17th, and McKenna Flinn had a season best time of 23:35 to place 24th.
Payton Schueller led the JV girls with a first-place finish (23:41) with a new personal best. Rachel Huhnerkoch was third, Cassie Omtvedt fourth, Victoria Jorgenson seventh, Lizzie Guggisberg ninth and Ari Kerkhoff-Shaw 19th as all of the JV runners had season best times.
Madalyn Munsell was fourth and Danica Kent ninth to pace the junior high girls.
The Redwood Valley boys also had a great outing, as six of the top seven finishers all set personal bests in leading the Cards to a second place finish. The Cardinals had 42 team points to place second behind champion Marshall (21) in the eight team race.
Jayson Peyerl continued to run at a high level, finishing first with a new personal best of 16:17. Camden Cilek (18:16) was eighth, Leo Steffl (18:30) 10th, Tate Goodthunder (18:36) finished 11th and Luke Hammerschmidt (18:40) 12th to round out the top five. Keegan Holzapfel (19:42) was 27th and Beau Allen (20:01) 32nd.
Cohen Frank knocked 1:33 off of his best ever time to lead the JV team with a 10th place finish (20:59). Daniel Haen (21:05) was 11th, Lucas Elmer (21:32) 12th. Jack Frank (21:54) 14th, Mason Bawden (22:02) 15th and Owen Smith (22:45) 19th. Gustav Lamotey was 20th, Aidan Koplin 22nd, Noah U’Ren 23rd, Jacob Zollner 29th, Kody Robinson 30th and Levi Stoneberg 33rd.
Kilen Cilek was fourth, Will Ahrens 12th, Kohen Prescott 15th and Elway Berg 17th to pace the junior high boys.
The Cardinals travel to Olivia Oct. 3 for the BOLD invitational.