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Boys cross country: Fenske heading back to Class 2A State Meet

Farmington senior Elliot Fenske runs with the pack at the Section 1AA cross country meet.

A strong finishing kick in the final half-mile earned Elliot Fenske another trip to the Class 2A State Cross Country Meet.

The Farmington senior moved up four places with his sprint to the finish line at Thursday's Section 1AA Championships at Brooktree Golf Course, finishing the 5,000-meter course in a time of 16 minutes, 25 seconds, to earn seventh place out of 98 runners.

"Battling a bit of a cold he faltered a bit and was seventh at the two-mile. He was struggling a bit with 800 meters left and fell out of state meet qualifying at 11th," Farmington coach Keith Revels said. "With the final 400 meters a gentle down slope he found another gear and passed four runners."

Fenske will close out his career Saturday at the state meet at St. Olaf College in Northfield. Fenske was 28th at the meet last fall.

The Tigers scored 263 team points to place eighth, one spot better than last year, out of 14 teams. Rochester John Marshall was one point back in ninth and Missota Conference rival Northfield was 10th with 265 points.

Owatonna placed seven runners in the top 17 in edging Lakeville North, 54-61, for the team title. Missota Conference champion Red Wing finished third, but qualified two individual runners for the state meet.

"Not a bad showing for the boys," Revels said. "Kind of seeing the same trend we saw last week with our pack moving up in the field."

Farmington had the largest spread in the 14-team field among its top five runners at just over two minutes, but just 25 seconds separated runners two through six.

Junior Lincoln Kirchoff served as the team's No. 2 runner, coming in 60th in a time of 18:06. Sophomore Ben Olson was just one second back in 61st.

Freshman Dan Block finished 67th in a time of 18:23 in his first section meet and senior Carl Elmer capped off his career with a 68th-place time of 18:25.

Sophomores Adam Wallenta (72nd, 18:31) and Alec Wilson (86th, 19:03) completed the varsity lineup.