116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
State-qualifying meets continue Thursday for Iowa high school cross country competitors.
Qualifiers advance to the state meet next Friday and Saturday at Lakeside Golf Course, Fort Dodge.
A primer on Thursday’s area meets:
(Top 3 teams, top 15 individuals advance from each site to the state meet)
Scouting the girls: Monticello and Tipton are ranked third and fourth and should be shoo-ins to qualify. Both teams have a front-of-the-pack prospect; Tipton’s Alivia Edens and Monticello’s Emma Althoff figure to chase favorite Ellie Rathe of Union Community. Dyersville Beckman and Union are expected to vie for the third qualifying spot.
Scouting the boys: A 1-vs.-2 battle is rare in district competition, but that’s what we have here between defending state champion Danville-New London and Tipton. D-NL has an ace in Ty Carr and a strong second piece in Alexander Julian while the Tigers counter with a front pack of Ty Nichols, Troy Butler and Clay Bohlmann. Starmont’s Charlie Sieck could be a factor, as well.
Scouting the girls: Second-ranked Denver and No. 6 Jesup are the cream of the crop, both collectively and individually. Denver has three runners rated in the top 12 statewide, and Jesup has a veteran in Amanda Treptow and a rookie in Mackenzie Wilson. Osage’s Katelyn Johnston might be a slight favorite to claim the title.
Scouting the boys: The team race is wide open, with little margin for error for as many as seven contenders to nail down the three spots. Waukon and New Hampton rate as slight favorites, with Oelwein and Jesup among the chase pack. Joey Hovinga of Forest City and Nolan Evans of Jesup are the co-favorites individually.
Scouting the girls: Mid-Prairie is the four-time defending state champion and ranked No. 1 again this fall behind individual star Danielle Hostetler. The Golden Hawks have a wealth of talent behind Hostetler, who won the 2020 state title as a freshman. Williamsburg is a good bet to qualify, with Albia and Davis County the best of the rest.
Scouting the boys: Third-ranked Williamsburg and No. 4 Mid-Prairie will duel for the title, with Davis County the likely third qualifier. Davis County’s Carson Shively is expected to be the first through the chute; Mid-Prairie’s Thaddeus Shetler and Williamsburg’s Harrison Garber could challenge.
(Top 2 teams, top 10 individuals advance from each site to the state meet)
Scouting the girls: Calamus-Wheatland freshman Noelle Steines has put the state on notice; she’s the 1A title favorite. How wide is the gap between Steines and the field? We’ll learn more Thursday, when she goes head-to-head with second-ranked Jalyssa Blazek of Turkey Valley. Hudson is the team favorite and has a strong lead runner in Addison Grady. Elkader Central could be the other qualifier.
Scouting the boys: Valley Lutheran of Cedar Falls is ranked fourth and the favorite at Cascade. Valley has the individual frontrunner in Isaac Natvig. Marcus Blount of Clinton Prince of Peace is the top challenger.
Scouting the girls: Old rivals Haley Meyer of Lansing Kee (the 2020 state champion) and Billie Wagner of South Winneshiek renew acquaintances. South Winn is ranked No. 2 as a team, and Kee looks to lock up the other berth.
Scouting the boys: Maquoketa Valley has been a state-meet regular in recent years, and the Wildcats are a safe bet to return behind seniors Cy Huber and Nolan Ries. Huber is one of the individual favorites, along with Bellevue’s Payton Griebel and South Winneshiek’s Isaiah Kruckman.
AT IOWA CITY
Scouting the girls: Iowa City Regina and North Linn are co-favorites in the team race, and appear to be well ahead of the rest of the field. North Linn’s Meghan Wheatley has put together a strong sophomore season and looks like the girl to beat, with Greenlee Smock of Lynnville-Sully the chief challenger.
Scouting the boys: No top-10 teams in the field. Iowa City Regina (11th) and Columbus Community (14th) appear to be the co-leaders. English Valleys’ Bryson Grove and Regina’s Aidan O’Neil headline the individual cast.