Park boys will shoot to move up in the conference and section standings this cross country season. For the slender three-member Park girls team it will be a time of racing for individual bests. Park …
Park boys will shoot to move up in the conference and section standings this cross country season. For the slender three-member Park girls team it will be a time of racing for individual bests.
Park boys were just ninth in the team race in the Suburban East Conference meet last season, but then jumped up to a seventh-place finish in the Park had three seniors, three juniors and a seventh- grader on that section squad last fall.
“They’ll be pretty good,” said c-head coach Mike Moran. “We’ve two guys (returning) who were in the top seven, so there’s a fighting chance they’ll be better than last year. Replacing Henry Fischer will be hard but our seventh grader (Samuel Larson) who ran varsity for us in the end he’s this much taller than he last time I saw him in the spring.
“Our top five or six should be pretty good,” Moran continued.
Senior Parker Hahn led the Wolfpack boys last season, finishing 20th in the section meet and 24rd in the SEC meet, both with 17:03 times.
Along with Hahn, coaches are expecting solid seasons from Dale Kirsch and Nicholas McDonald.
Park’s seven runners were bunched from 17:93 to 18:37 in the section meet last season.
“My goal is to get everyone under 18, into the 17s,” said Park senior Kirsch, 32nd last season at sections with a time of 17:29.3. “If we got under 17 we could possibly make state as a team.”
Park’s girls were 12th in the section meet last season, but even that modest placing will be impossible to achieve this season.
Just three girls are out for the cross country team, but one of the three is a top returner in junior Lydia Best. Best was 74th in the section meet (22:57.5). She also finished 12th in the girls 1,600-meter run during spring track, running a time of 5:40.35.
“Lydia had a great track season,” said co-head coach Brad Narveson. “She should definitely move up into the top five or six, hopefully on our all-time list for 5. Based on her track season I think she is more than capable of doing that. She worked hard this summer, too.”
Missing for the girls team, of course, is 800-meter school record holder Briahna Hensel, who was ninth in the conference cross country meet (19:51), 25th in the section meet and qualified for the state track meet. Hensel is expected to be one of the top runners at the University of Minnesota Morris this season.
Park opens the season with a meet Thursday, Sept. 2m hosting East Ridge, Cretin-Derham Hall and Hastings at Cottage Grove Middle School/Grey Cloud Elementary.