Prep Sports

Clear Creek Amana boys' cross country continuing at a fast clip

Clippers run five in the top 12 at North Linn Invitational

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TROY MILLS — Nick O’Connor embraced the conditions.

“I’ve been told I run better in the cold,” he said.

As for his team? Hot or cold, fast course or sloppy, it doesn’t really matter.

All five of Clear Creek Amana’s scoring runners placed in the top 12 at the North Linn Invitational cross country meet Saturday morning on the North Linn campus.

A Class 3A 10th-place finisher at last year’s state meet, CCA is ranked No. 2. The Clippers tallied a tidy 39 points and outdistanced runner-up Marion (76). Tipton was third with 102.

“We knew Tipton was going to be here, and they’re a very good 2A team,” O’Connor said. “Marion beat us earlier this season. We wanted to compete with those teams.”

Some of the Clippers’ best competition comes at practice.

“Our top four guys kind of rotate at the front,” O’Connor said. “I’m usually our second or third guy, but I’m good in the cold.”

It was in the upper 40s at race time, with the course greasy after Friday night’s storms.

Mount Pleasant’s Cody Mertens was the individual champion in 16:45, followed 13 seconds later by Luke Post of Center Point-Urbana.

Then it was a parade of fellows wearing CCA’s distinctive blue and white argyle patterns. O’Connor was third in 17:03, followed by Jack Sexton (fifth), Brandon Barker (eighth), Cole Liebe (11th) and Caleb Alcorn (12th).

Williamsburg was the girls’ champion with 106 points, with Megan Rathjen pacing the Raiders’ 7-23-24-25-27 effort.

Iowa City Regina was second with 120 points. Solon and Cascade both scored 141.

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Last year’s 1A state champion, Emily Staal of Springville-Central City was the class of the field, running in 18:16 and winning by more than a minute.

“I didn’t expect the best time today. I just tried to do the best I could,” Staal said. “I kept feeling my shoes slipping off (in the mud).”

Adrianna Katcher of Center Point-Urbana, the two-time defending 3A state champ, was second in 19:18. 

NORTH LINN INVITATIONAL

At Troy Mills

GIRLS RESULTS

Teams — 1. Williamsburg 106, 2. Iowa City Regina 120, 3. Solon 142, 4. Cascade 142, 5. Benton Community 163, 6. Marion 191, 7. Jesup 193, 8. Mount Pleasant 217, 9. Hudson 230, 10. Springville-Central City 273, 11. Starmont 276, 12. North Linn 276, 13. Center Point-Urbana 284, 14. Tipton 286, 15. Bellevue Marquette 296, 16. Vinton-Shellsburg 366, 17. Grundy Center/Gladbrook-Reinbeck 433, 18. Washington (Iowa) 501.

Individuals — 1. Emily Staal (Spr-CC), 18:16; 2. Adrianna Katcher (CPU), 19:18; 3. Abby Ryon (MtP), 20:07; 4. Madeline Rhomberg (Casc), 20:11; 5. Kay Fett (V-Sh), 20:17; 6. Emma Bock (Sol), 20:17; 7. Megan Rathjen (Wmsbg), 20:37; 8. Josie Voss (ICR), 20:41; 9. Jenna Twait (Hud), 20:43; 10. Kallie Wallick (Tip), 20:46.

Regina — 8. Voss, 11. Annalee Bartles, 20:48; 28. Kennedy Scott, 21:49; 32. Molly Vittetoe, 22:00; 42. Mary Catherine Graff, 22:19.

Marion — 13. Hallie Kephart, 20:53; 22. Corrina Dittmer, 21:23; 29. Peyton Steffen, 21:51; 55. Avery Manderscheid, 22:32; 77. Leah Fitch, 23:06.

BOYS RESULTS

Teams — 1. Clear Creek Amana 39, 2. Marion 76, 3. Tipton 102, 4. Center Point-Urbana 141, 5. Benton Community 185, 6. Williamsburg 210, 7. Mount Pleasant 211, 8. Maquoketa Valley 237, 9. Grundy Center/Gladbrook-Reinbeck 250, 10. Solon 258, 11. North Linn 280, 12. Cascade 307, 13. Jesup 356, 14. Vinton-Shellsburg 360, 15. Washington (Iowa) 363, 16. Hudson 397, 17. Alburnett 520, 18. Midland 552, 19. Independence 564.

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Individuals — 1. Cody Mertens (MtP), 16:45; 2. Luke Post (CPU), 16:58; 3. Nick O’Connor (CCA), 17:03; 4. Caleb Shumaker (Tip), 17:04; 5. Jack Sexton (CCA), 17:13; 6. Seth Boss (NL), 17:18; 7. Harrison Vanderlinden (Mar), 17:21; 8. Brandon Barker (CCA), 17:23; 9. Cole Hemann (Mar), 17:27; 10. Dylan Spina (BC), 17:37.

Marion — 7. Vanderlinden, 9. Hemann, 15. Will Hernandez, 17:53; 18. Reid Coates, 18:01; 27. Matt Brase, 18:17.

Regina — 100. Zach Kratz, 19:51; 105. Ethan Boileau, 20:00; 120. Nick Kratz, 21:05; 130. Nicholas Abasada, 21:38.

l Comments: (319) 368-8857; jeff.linder@thegazette.com

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