Here's a quick primer for today's meets in Long Prairie, Marshall and Warroad. There are several of class A's best teams in the field so today's action should be among the best of the week!
Location: Long Prairie Country Club
Weather: Rain, mid 50's
Individuals to watch: Emmet Anderson (Staples-Motley, 15:09.4), Jacob Bright (West Central Area, 15:27.5), Hunter Klimek (Staples-Motley, 15:29.9), Jack Van Kempen (West Central Area, 16:08.4) Noah Stewart (Morris Area, 16:25.7)
The Skinny: Many eyes will be on the results of this meet to see how state leading Emmet Anderson follows up his blazing fast 15:09.4 race at MSUM just a few days ago. Also back from that field with be his teammate, senior Hunter Klimek and West Central Area senior Jacob Bright who also dipped under 15:30 on Friday night. WCA projects as the team favorite with potentially placing five in front of Staples-Motley's fourth runner, with a very low team average under 16:30. Staples-Motley could go 1-2 and still lose the meet as their fifth man slates more than 10 spots lower.
Individuals to watch: Kyanna Burton (Staples-Motley, 19:01.7), Kira Sweeney (Staples-Motley, 19:16.7), Kristine Kalthoff (Albany, 19:25.5), Lexi Bright (WCA, 19:29.1), Aften Robinson (Staples-Motley, 19:30.8)
The Skinny: The field will be deep on talent as 12 runners come into the meet with a PR under 20 minutes including race favorite Staples-Motley eighth grader Kyanna Burton at 19:01.7. Staples-Motley, who held steady at no. 2 in the class A coaches poll, will also be the decided team favorite with four of those sub 20 names on their roster which could project to four in the top ten. The race for second could be especially close between no. 4 Albany and WCA coming down to any single runner including displacers playing a role in the final tally.
*postponed until 9/10
Location: Independence Park, Marshall
Weather: rain, 60's
Individuals to Watch: Zach Matzner (Marshall, 16:22.8), Adam Koller (Worthington, 16:24.2), Eli Salisbury (Marshall, 16:36.6), Jayson Peyrel (Redwood Valley, 16:44.3), Christian Lietz (Worthington, 16:50.3)
The Skinny: Marshall will feature a nice group of seven boys with PRs under 17 minutes and another few in the low 17 minute range making up what should be a competitive race up front. Marshall is the team favorite, led by senior Zach Matzner who comes in with the fastest PR in the field. Worthington senior Adam Koller has the second fastest PR and won the TMB Panther Invite last week in 16:59.
Individuals to Watch: Morgan Gehl (Murray County Central-Fulda, 17:48), Grace Drietz (Canby-Minneota, 18:30.5), Jersey Leyson (Marshall, 18:42.5), Bellamy Sukalski (Marshall, 18:575), Natalee Sample (Marshall, 19:01.3)
The Skinny: Marshall should have a comfortable advantage over the field with the possibility of putting all five scorers in the top 10 and adding their sixth and seventh in the top 15. Murray County Central-Fulda junior Morgan Gehl comes in with the fastest PR but has not run with 90 seconds of that in her first few weeks of the year so Canby-Minneota sophomore Grace Drietz could be the right competitor to push them both closer to their potential as two of the top ranked runners in the state. Ten individuals in the field have a PR under 20 minutes with four of those under 19 so it could be a fun day at Marshall.
Location: Warroad HS
Weather: low 60's, rain.
Individuals to Watch: Jake Erickson (International Falls, 17:10), Tristan Anderson (Roseau, 17:34.1), Parker Sivonen (International Falls, 17:43), Grant Hemberger (Bagley, 17:43.7), David Nelson (Roseau, 17:47.4)
The Skinny: In our projections this should be a tight meet with three teams in contention. Roseau appears the favorite based on PRs with five of the ten fastest but many of those placements are within 30 seconds so it should be a wide open race. International Falls senior Jake Erickson has the fastest PR of 17:10 but finished fourth at his home meet earlier this year behind both junior David Nelson and senior Kyle Erickson of Roseau.
The Skinny: Ryan Ford and her International Falls team look to be the favorites on the day. Several teams are awaiting the arrival of younger runners to debut in our team scores but International Falls is likely to have its top five inside the top ten and that should be enough in the small field to get the win. Sophomore Ryan Ford is the only athlete with a PR under 20 minutes and has beaten several athletes in the field, head to head already this season in her win at Roseau two last week.