FREEMAN-Two runners on opposite ends of the spectrum captured individual titles at the Region 3B cross-country meet on Thursday.
Freeman Academy/Marion senior Thaniel Schroeder, who is completing his brilliant cross-country career, won the boys race in 18-minutes and 03.78 seconds. Andes Central/Dakota Christian eighth-grader Isabella Brouwer covered the 5,000-meter race in 21:23.19 and won her first-ever region title.
Schroeder and Brouwer will now compete in the state cross-country meet on Oct. 20 at Yankton Trail Park in Sioux Falls. The top 20 individual finishers and up to five runners from the top three teams advance to state.
Freeman Academy/Marion had four of the top eight runners and won the boys title with nine points. Titus Roesler placed third (19:14.57), Luke Allison took fifth (19:39.61) and Connor Epp finished eighth (20:03.51). Mitchell Christian and Menno also qualified on the boys side.
Kimball/White Lake won the girls race with 16 points. KWL's Sidney McCord and Christine Gaulke placed fourth and fifth, respectively. McCord clocked in at 22:26.22, while Gaulke finished in 22:28.21. Burke and Andes Central/Dakota Christian girls teams also qualified for state.
Schroeder and Brouwer not only battled their competitors, but also contended with chilly and sloppy conditions at Freeman's Valley View Golf Course.
Brouwer wasn't a fan of the mud puddles on the course and one of her shoes were untied after the first half of a mile. But added the wind actually helped in certain portions of the race.
"It was never really against you," Brouwer said. "That actually helped a lot. It's not a strong, strong wind. So it actually helped you breathe better and taking in more air."
Brouwer outlasted Gregory's Emma Thomas, who came in second with a time of 22:04.93. Brouwer added she tried not think about the conditions and focused on running with a positive attitude.
"I was not thinking about how much you have left, just thinking about what you are doing right now," Brouwer said. "Having a positive attitude, just keeping that through your mind and just keep on saying positive things."
Schroeder finished just over a minute faster than second-place Alec Nelson of Mitchell Christian.
"I felt pretty strong," Schroeder said. "It was cold and wet and muddy, but I felt good."
Schroeder jumped out to a big lead and coasted to the victory.
"I always like to start it fast, that way you don't get caught up in traffic at all," Schroeder said.
Chamberlain girls, Platte-Geddes boys win region meet
CHAMBERLAIN-After sitting out last season, Chamberlain senior Ella Byers appears primed to take back her spot on top of the Class A cross-country scene after winning Thursday's Region 4A girls meet by 24 seconds at Chamberlain Country Club, finishing the race in 18:23.
Byers pulled away from Winner's Sidda Schuyler halfway through the race and never looked back, holding a sizeable lead throughout the remainder of the race.
"I didn't really have any expectations going into (Thursday) other than to lower my (personal record) and I've been trying to lower my time as the season goes," Byers said. "I wasn't necessarily surprised because I knew if I ran the time I wanted to, then I could win."
Byers won't be headed to the state meet without her teammates, as Chamberlain blew away the competition, with its 18 points besting second-place Winner by 31. Allison Hough and Kinsey Evans placed third and fourth, respectively, while Ella Phillips came in 11th.
Winner qualified for the state meet thanks to a second-place finish by Schuyler and Platte-Geddes placed third to also qualify, with Kelly Sondgeroth leading the way in seventh.
The Black Panthers' boys team is also headed to state after recording 35 points to edge Todd County by six. Platte-Geddes was by two top-10 finishers in Nate Whalen (eighth place) and meet champion Caden Tegethoff.
Tegethoff led for the majority of the race, but Winner's Kade Watson was nipping at his heels until reaching the home stretch. Tegethoff was able to pull away and cross the finish line in 17:02, just five seconds ahead of Watson.
"He was right on me the whole time," Tegethoff said of Watson. "I could hear him so I was a little nervous."
Chamberlain's Dominic Santiago and Declan Tveit both qualified for state after placing third and sixth, respectively. Mount Vernon/Plankinton runners Logan Bush (seventh) and Logan Tlam also qualified, while the Titans placed fourth as a team, just missing out on a team berth.
Watson will be joined at state by teammates Wyatt Turnquist, who placed 14th, and Joseph Laprath, who placed 16th in the race.
Canistota boys and girls headed to state
IRENE-The Canistota boys and girls cross-country teams placed in the top three and secured spots in the state cross-country meet on Oct. 20 in Sioux Falls.
The Canistota boys placed second in the Region 2B meet with 29 points, while the girls took third with 32 points.
Canistota's Tate Tieszen finished in seventh place in 18:49.61, while teammate Josiah Schroeder took eighth in 18:53.74. Canistota's Trey Ortman placed 20th in 19:23.52.
On the girls side, Canistota's Kara Roshone took fourth in 20:59.37 and teammate Lexi Tieszen finished seventh in 20:59.37.
The Howard girls placed second as a team with 27 points. Howard's Emma Neises (21:35.26) took eighth place, while Presley Claussen took 13th place in 22:17.71. Howard's Abby Connor placed 15th in 22:17.71 and Saddie Palmquist finished in 18th place (22:19.07) for the Tigers.
Lyman boys claim Region 4B title
GETTYSBURG-Brad Lebeda paced the Lyman boys to a team title at the Region 4B cross-country meet on Thursday.
Lebeda placed third in 17:54.63, while teammate Brenden Estes took seventh with 18:10.75. Lyman's Bryce Muirhead took 20th place in 19:07.67. The Raiders finished with 29 points, just edging Sunshine Bible Academy by one point for the team title.
On the girls side, Ipswich took first with seven points. Sanborn Central/Woonsocket's Hannah Terkildsen qualified for state with an eighth-place finish in a time of 22:02.84.
MCM's Pulse, Schock qualify for state
DELL RAPIDS-McCook Central/Montrose senior Blake Pulse and sophomore Jordan Schock qualified for the state meet at Thursday's Region 2A cross-country meet.
Pulse placed sixth with a time of 17:50.87, while Schock came in 19th at 18:32.91, with the top 20 finishers advancing to state. The Fighting Cougars placed sixth as a team, with the top three moving on.
Sioux Falls Christian ran away with the boys title after scoring 18 points and placing four runners in the top seven. West Central's Braden Peters was the individual champion, taking the race in 16:33.19, 43 seconds ahead of the rest of the field.
Flandeau won the girls team championship with 15 points and Baltic's Anastasia Wilkison won the individual championship by 27 seconds.
Ethan/Parkston girls capture Region 3A title
LENNOX-The Ethan/Parkston girls edged Lennox by one point and won the Region 3A cross-country meet on Thursday.
The Trojans finished with 33 points, while Lennox had 34 points. Lindsey Roth finished second in the individual race in 18:36.54. Lennox's Ali Bainbridge was the individual medalist in 17:55.64.
Ethan/Parkston's Annalise Buenning (20:09.01) and Adaya Plastow (20:32.14) took sixth and 11th, respectively. Lexy Leischner finished in 14th place with a time of 20:40.30. Wagner's Alcista Dion qualified for state with a 19th place finish in 21:06.22.
On the boys side, Bon Homme's Nate Hall took 14th place and advanced to state in 17:21.30. Ethan/Parkston's Austin Bartelt punched his ticket to state with a time of 17:21.30 and a 15th place finish. Vermillion won the boys team title with 27 points.