Willmar, Red Wing, Mora, And Many Others Open Season Today

(Varsity Races Two Miles)

Location: Coffee Mill Golf Course, Wabasha, MN

Weather: Sunny, high 80s, and high humidity

BOYS

Virtual Meet Projection: Red Wing (15), Plainview-Elgin-Millville (76), Lake City (103)

Top Individuals: Tom Nemanich (Red Wing, 15:38), Tucker Wallin (Red Wing, 16:00), Bryan Zucker (Red Wing, 16:15), Weston Wyatt (Red Wing, 16:19)

The Skinny: Red Wing, ranked fifth in Class AA, will open up their season as they look to improve upon their seventh place finish at last year's State Cross Country Championships. Six of their athletes, led by Tom Nemanich, could sweep the top six spots which would start their season with a perfect score.  Even if Red Wing does not have their best day, they should still win by a very impressive margin as they have a strong depth of runners and are seeded far ahead of the rest of the field of teams. Section rivals Planview-Elgin-Millville and Lake City will both be vying for a spot at the Class A State Championships. Plainview-Elgin-Millville comes in to the season ranked 11th in Class A. Nemanich is coming off of personal bests in the 1600m (4:29) and 3200m (9:48) this past outdoor track season and looks to start off his season strong with this 2 mile effort where he was runner-up last year.

GIRLS

Virtual Meet Projection: Red Wing (22), Lake City (57)

Top Individuals: Madeline Perry (Rochester Area Home, 19:13), Ariana Mollgaard (Red Wing, 19:18), Grace Dube (Red Wing, 19:18), Tori Leitner (Red Wing, 19:22)

The Skinny: The Red Wing girl's team looks to start their season with a win at this meet. Ariana Mollgaard of Red Wing advanced to the State Championships in cross country last season and looks to lead their pack again this season. Tori Leitner was right behind her at the Section 1AA Championships, just missing the individual advancement to the State Championships. The Red Wing team has four girls with personal bests in cross country within thirteen seconds of each other.  Their next two runners are not far off so with a pack like that they should grab the win. Although on paper it looks like Red Wing has an easy win but Lake City won't be far off with their solid pack of young runners that could make it for a close team finish. The individual race will be interesting to follow as the top four girls should be close together to the finish, especially with the race only being 2 miles. The top five finishers from last year's meet are returning, led by the returning champion Madeline Perry.
(written by Emma Benner)
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