October 28, 2015

Beulah-Hazen XC ends season at state

BY JARANN JOHNSON

The team goals for the Beulah-Hazen cross-country team at the beginning of the season were a top-five girls’ finish and a  top-two boys’ finish at state. As the season wore on, it became very clear that reaching both goals would take hard work and a bit of luck.

The Beulah-Hazen crosscountry team put in the work they needed to reach their goals, but luck was not on their side this year. The Beulah-Hazen cross-country team finished in fifth place on the boys’ side and 14th on the girls’ side.

The boys were led by senior Adam Becker. Becker was hoping to earn all-state honors at the race, which are awarded to runners who finish in the top 20. Becker was just outside of his goal, finishing the five kilometer course 28th overall.

Becker finished with a time of 18 minutes and 20.15 seconds. Mike Baker, New Town, claimed the final all-state spot in 17:49.30, joining seven other New Town runners who earned all-state honors.

New Town easily ran way with Class B champion honors, placing six runners in the top 10 overall and pushing the state champ, Ryan Wheeling, across the finish line in 16:17.33 at Lincoln Drive Park in Grand Forks.

The push for second was a lot closer. Rugby, Hillsboro-Central Valley, and Beulah all seemed to be battling for the spot.

Rugby came in with their first two runners taking 10th and 23rd overall, but struggled to get a third across quickly. Rugby’s No. 3 runner came in at 40th overall.

Hillsboro had two runners come in in the top 30 as well, taking 22nd and 29th overall. Beulah-Hazen was in fourth place at that point, because Becker took 28th and No. 2 runner Jacob Weigel took 30th overall in 18:23.06.

Beulah-Hazen needed to make up 25 points in the final three scoring spots to reach second place. Catching Hillsboro-Central Valley for third place seemed like an easier task, since Hillsoro-Central Valley was only seven points ahead of Beulah-Hazen at that point in the race.

The No. 3 runners for each school came in, and Beulah-Hazen seemed to be getting closer to their goal. Rugby pushed across a runner at 40th, moving their team score to 73 points, and Hillsboro-Central Valley pushed a runner across at 37th, moving their team score to 88.

Beulah-Hazen’s No. 3 runner was Isak Olson (18:26.90). He moved Beulah-Hazen’s team score to 91 points, just three shy of Hillsboro-Central Valley. Coming back for second or third place proved too tough, though, as the No. 4 runners for each team came in.

Rugby quickly added a 44th overall fi nish, bringing their score to 117, and Hillsboro-Central Valley added a 39th overall finish, bringing their score to 127.

Beulah-Hazen’s No. 4 runner was sophomore Aaron Vallejo. Vallejo finished in 47th place (18:51.24) making Beulah-Hazen’s score 138 points. Beulah-Hazen needed to make up 21 points with their last runner to take second place and 11 points to take third. Neither goal happened.

Rugby pushed a runner across at 61st overall and Hillsboro pushed a runner across at 52nd overall.

Both schools were close, but Rugby’s top-heavy finish was barely enough to earn second place. Rugby finished with 178  points and Hillsboro finished with 179 points.

Beulah-Hazen came in fourth overall, and Josten Hafner locked in the last scoring spot with a 56th overall finish (19:05.15). Logan Miller ran at the state meet and fi nished 66th (19:05.15), it was his first race back after crawling to the fi nish at the Class B West Region meet.


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