Cross country: Irish face talented field at home meet
The Rosemount boys finished first and the girls team fourth at last year’s Rosemount Invitational.
Both teams slipped back a few spots at this season’s home meet Friday morning, but head coach Chris Harder was still pleased with his runners’ efforts in their first competition of the season. The Irish boys slipped to fourth in the 20-team field and the girls were sixth out of 15 teams.
“The boys wanted to finish higher, but we had a pretty solid meet. We actually competed better than last year even though we won the invitational,” Harder said. “The girls as a team showed vast improvement over last year. We finished lower, but the competition was much better than a year ago. I was proud of the way the girls competed.”The Irish boys came up just short in a close three-team race for second place. Third-ranked Eden Prairie pulled away from the field, placing four runners in the top 10 en route to scoring 50 points, fourth-ranked Edina followed with 99 points, No. 5 Mounds View was third with 101 points and the sixth-ranked Irish scored 106 points to outdistance fifth-place Robbinsdale Armstrong by 86.Junior returner Alex Berhe took over Trevor Capra’s role as the team’s No. 1 runner, placing fourth out of 169 runners in the two-mile race with a time of 10:10. Berhe ran a 5-flat first mile that put him in first place at the race’s halfway point before running a 5:10 second mile.Senior Cody Sedbrook just missed the top 10 with an 11th-place time of 10:29. The Irish’s final three counting runners followed in a tight pack with Ryan Brumm placing 26th in 10:40, Sam Ivanecky 30th in 10:43 and Ryan Condon 35th in 10:45.Sam Karlson (80th, 11:19) and Michael Sampers (104th, 11:38) rounded out the varsity lineup.In the girls race, three-state ranked teams claimed the top three spots. Fourth-ranked Eden Prairie defeated No. 6 Edina 59-112 and No. 12 Prior Lake finished third with 131 points. The Irish scored 158 points, and could have challenged for third had past state qualifier Hannah Grim not faded late in the race.“Hannah Grim really went out to try to win the race, but had some issues the second half of the race,” Harder said. “She is not happy with how she finished, but we are proud of her effort and competitiveness.”Eighth-grader Sydney Hansen emerged to lead the Irish with a 13th-place time of 12:07 on the two-mile course.
“Sydney Hansen had a sensational race. Even though it was her first race, we were not surprised by her finish,” Harder said. “She has high expectations for herself and she followed through well.”Liz Evenocheck placed 24th in 12:32, Briana Cleveland was 32nd in 12:45 and eighth-grader Sydney Regalado was 44th in 12:59. Naomi Alvarez rounded out the top five with a 45th-place time of 13:00.Grim was 48th in 13:02 and Natalie Narloch came in 65th in 13:30.The Irish have another week to train before competing at the Lakeville Applejack Invitational next Friday afternoon at Aronson Park.“The girls are knocking on the door for state rankings. After another two weeks of solid training, we should be in position for the Applejack meet in Lakeville,” Harder said. “There is no telling what these girls are capable of accomplishing.”