Kiera Olson of Lanesboro/Fillmore Central is going to the state cross-country meet as a result of her performance at the section meet.
Kiera Olson of Lanesboro/Fillmore Central is going to the state cross-country meet as a result of her performance at the section meet.
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For the first time in several seasons, Lanesboro/Fillmore Central advanced an individual runner to the state cross- country meet at St Olaf College on Nov. 2. L/FC freshman Kiera Olson took sixth in the ladies' 4K at section, so she'll join the top two teams of athletes and top eight finishers not on those squads at state.

A few snow flurries greeted runners as they lined up for the Section 1A cross country championships at Northern Hills Golf Course in Rochester Thursday. L/FC assistant coach Joe Cullen reported a record number of competitors at the event. There were 24 ladies' teams present (143 runners) and 22 boys' squads (141 runners).

Thursday's 4K was won by Emi Trost of Cannon Falls (14.44), followed by Chrissy Lofgren of Stewartville and McKenzie Kirtz of Grand Meadow/LeRoy Ostrander/Southland. Team honors went to Dover-Eyota with Lake City second and Plainview-Elgin-Millville third. The Burros took 12th as a team.

Other L/FC runners included Leah Ruen (30th), Emily Snider (80th), and Jaime Rein (85th). Cami Jones and Heather Boyum also competed for the Burros.

Cullen said that Jones recorded a new personal record, as did male runners Layton Howerton and Nate Eversole.

That 5K race was won by Ian Torchia of Rochester Lourdes, who broke the tape in 16:07. Second went to Winona Cotter's Matt Schrupp, and third to Christian Bance of Chatfield. P-E-M took first as a team, followed by Cotter and Lake City. L/FC took 14th.

Burro junior Travis Troendle led his team across the finish line, snagging 44th overall. Teammates Eversole (51st), and Michael Harrison (92nd) followed, along with Casey Olson, Ben Gjere, Matthew Kiehne, and Howerton.

"I'm proud of our kids and how hard they worked this year," Cullen said. He and wife/head coach Ellen Cullen are planning to escort Olson to the state tournament on Saturday.