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December 1, 2022

10/27/2022 11:21:00 AM
I-G boys, Hope Connolly reach state cross country goal

Sectional championship honors and a trip to th WIAA state cross country meet is in store for the Iowa-Grant boys cross country team with a win at the Albany Sectional Saturday with a score of 59.
Senior Mason Aide took second while sophomore Bret Connolly and senior Caden Pennekamp were also in the top 10.
The Panthers finished well ahead of the second place and other representative for the state meet as Fennimore was runner up with 106 points.
Pecatonica-Argyle was 12th with 295 points.
Other team scores were: Albany 126, Belleville 158, Boscobel 182, Riverdale 186, Darlington 201, Poynette 202, Parkview 251, Wisconsin Heights/Barneveld 253, Rio/Fall River 267, St. Ambrose Academy 315, Marshall 341, Lancaster 364, River Ridge 370. North Crawford 374.
I-G Boys Results
2-Mason Aide 17:07.7
4-Bret Connolly 17:53.9
8-Caden Pennekamp 17:56.9
19-Will Fulton 19:02.3
24-Owen Laufenberg 19:09.9
25-Noah Lange 19:21.2
45-CJ Straka 20:37.5
17-Ridge Toay 18:52.3
53-Jakob Orloff 21:01.2
73-Grant Kuberski 21:44.1
75-Garrett Phillipson 21:51.7
77-Aidan Gruenenfelder
78-Lukas Orloff 21:56.8
105-Emerson Koch 24:55.0
Iowa-Grant senior Hope Connolly finished 5th overall while running as an individual and will compete at the state meet at Wisconsin Rapids Saturday. Her time was 20:57.4.
Also running for the Panthers were Meagan Cullen and Rylee Stecklein. Cullen, a junior, ran the coursein 24:13.8 while fellow junior Stecklein ran it in 29:46.4.
Boscobel with 52 points and Lancaster with 78 will represent the sectional at state as teams.
Girls Team Results
7th 148
Wis Heights/Barneveld
7-Samantha Herrling 21.15.8
12-Izabel Durst 22:02.1
34-Tirzah Caminiti 24:13.2
40-Taylee Thousand 24:25.5
55-VaRane Le Crom 26:35.1
60-Alexis Erickson 28:51.1
8th 212
15-Loretta Tisch 22:33.2
23-Anna Tisch 23:15.4
50-Mazie Theorin 24:06.1
54-Maddie Webster 26:29.2
70-Norah McCarthy 25:02.5
A very happy Iowa-Grant coach Jake Winkler talked about the meet: "On Saturday, the Iowa-Grant Cross Country teams traveled to Albany to the Baertschi Farm Cross Country course for the WIAA Sectional Meet.
"On the girl's side, Boscobel was 1st place and Lancaster was 2nd place, earning a trip to the State Meet in Wisconsin Rapids. Boscobel's Norah Jilson was the individual champion.
"Senior Hope Connolly continued her incredible senior campaign by placing 5th overall, earning the 4th individual qualifier spot and punching her ticket to the State Meet for the second year in a row. She ran a tough race - she got out early in the race and managed to race a strong second half of the race to get where she needed to be. You can do a lot of planning and plotting about who are the girls that you need to beat, but at the end of the day, when that starting gun goes off anything can happen. There were a couple of girls that we had not raced against very often this year, that ended up having great races. At around the two mile, Hope was in the 6th individual spot, and you need to be in the top 5. She worked her way into that 5th spot, then had a strong kick to get into the 4th spot. Hope has had an amazing season so far. She had a strong summer conditioning base coming into the season and got off to an amazing start. She had to overcome a foot arch injury and did an awesome job rehabbing and getting race ready with only missing one meet. I'm so excited to see how she races at state. It seems like at state there are usually a couple of girls that will be out front, then another pack of girls that can run mid-high 19's into the low 20s. Hope can definitely be in that mix, and if she runs her best race we could see her on the medal stand with a top 10 finish.
"Teamwise, we were once again unable to put together a scoring team of five girls. While I'm so proud of our individual accomplishments, I am determined to get more girls out for the team next year and to continue to try to build our girls program into a competitive squad.
"For the boy's side, I-G captured the Sectional title with 59 points over the runner-up Fennimore at 106. Carter Scholey of Belleville was the individual champion with a time of 17:00.
"This marks the 7th time in program history the boys team has qualified for the State meet, following up their most recent trip in 2019. This team has two runners that were on that 2019 state team, Mason Aide and Owen Laufenberg.
"Senior Mason Aide led the way for the Panthers, running an incredibly competitive race and finishing 2nd, passing the Individual SWAL Champion Nick Stitzer in the finishing kick. Mason set out to race with Scholey and Stitzer, and showed some incredible toughness to be in a position where he could make a move and get that 2nd place spot. We have such a strong team this year. The top 3 guys have been able to pack together in races well, and our 4-5-6 guys have also been able to close the gap on one another and have a healthy level of competition among them. That's part of what has been our greatest success is that they aren't worried about their place on the team, but have been focused on how our team places. I thought all seven of our guys did exactly what they needed to do in order to take care of business and to help build up momentum going into the State meet. I can't say enough about this group of young men. They've embraced their roles on the team and have stayed humble and kept a competitive edge throughout the season. I have not seen a shred of complacency among these guys, which is honestly inspiring for me as their coach.
"Going into the state meet, we definitely feel that we can compete with anybody. I'm going to try my best to prepare the team for the craziness that is the State meet. With Mason, Owen, and Hope all having State meet experience, we'll have the rest of the runners feeling confident and ready to race."

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