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Cross country: Boys run as a pack at Faribault; girls take 15th

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Cross country: Boys run as a pack at Faribault; girls take 15th
Farmington Minnesota P.O. Box 192 / 312 Oak St. 55024

The Farmington boys cross country team finished 13th Friday in its first appearance at the Faribault Invitational, but the Tigers' spread between their first and fifth runners was the best in the 17-team field.


Just 18 seconds separated team leader Adam Wallenta and No. 5 runner Dan Block over the flat 5,000-meter race. Wallenta placed 72nd out of 118 runners in 18:31 and Block came in 85th in 18:49.

"I thought the meet went really well," first-year head coach Lisa Lippold said. "Last week they had three intense workouts and still did a great job working through this meet. For the varsity, our goal was to have everyone run under 19 minutes and come in in a pack, and they all did that."

The Tigers' pack-running approach produced 384 team points. Stillwater topped White Bear Lake 30-65 for the team title.

Wallenta was closely followed by a pair of teammates. Tanner Grubb moved up from the JV and came in 73rd in 18:33 and Jordan Lugowski was 74th in 18:33. Jake Rudeen occupied the No. 4 spot in the lineup and placed 80th in 18:40 in his first 5,000-meter cross country race.

Caleb Eiffert (88th, 18:51) and Ben Olson (90th, 18:55) also competed for the Tigers.

Junior Maria Kiminski led the Tiger girls to 15th place in the 18-team field.

Apple Valley edged Stillwater 98-100 for the team title.

Kiminski ran a time of 16:19 in her first 4,000-meter race of the season, good enough for 30th place out of 118 runners. The clocking was a minute faster than her time a year ago at this time at the Montgomery Invite.

Freshman Sofia Chadwick occupied the No. 2 spot in the lineup and placed 48th in 16:42. Maricia Pacheco returned to the varsity lineup in the No. 3 position and reached the finish 51st in 16:46.

Freshman Alexis Johnson (94th, 18:06) and eighth-grader Maricella Pacheco (98th, 18:16) supplied the Tigers' final two counting scores. Natalia Sitzman (111th, 18:44) and Victoria Jacoby (118th 19:43) rounded out the varsity lineup.

The Tigers compete again tomorrow at the Apple Jack Invitational at Aronson Park in Lakeville.

Matt Steichen
Matt Steichen has been the sports editor at the Farmington Independent and Rosemount Town Pages since 2007. He holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism and mass communications from Briar Cliff University in Sioux City, Iowa. He has previously been a sports writer at the Sioux City Journal and Le Mars Daily Sentinel and the sports editor at the Austin Daily Herald.
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