LARP lands seven runners on all-conference teams


SUBMITTED PHOTO LARP runner Lauren Honken earned a place on the all-three rivers conference team.
By: 
Scott Bestul

Four boys and three girls from the Lewiston-Altura/Rushford-Peterson (LARP) cross country teams earned all-conference honors at last week’s Three Rivers Conference (TRC) meet in Plainview. To be named to the all-conference team, runners had to place in the top 21 finishers in the varsity race.

Lauren Honken, Grace Buchanan, and Ellie Ekern were the LARP girls named to the all-TRC team. Luke O’Hare, Andrew Hoiness, Ricky Buchanan, and Grady Hengel made all-conference on the boy’s squad. “All the athletes ran really well,” said coach Matt Kingsbury. “But the most impressive run was by Grace (Buchanan), who ran a personal best time that was 90 seconds faster than she ran on the same course only a week before. Grady Hengel had his best race of the season and continues to improve. Luke (O’Hare) just continues to look very strong.”

Girls’ results

Kingsbury was particularly pleased with his girl’s squad. Fielding a complete team for only the second time this season, the LARP ladies finished fifth in an 11-team field. “I was extremely proud of the girls’ team,” Kingsbury stressed. ‘They’ve come a long way this season.” LARP’s top finisher was 8th-grader Honken, who cracked the top ten with an 8th-place finish. Honken covered the 5K (3.1 mile) course in 21:21.0. Buchanan’s PR performance (21:55.2) earned her 19th place. Ekern, another 8th grader running extremely well, ran 22:00.1 and placed 20th. Rounding out the LARP girls squad were Hannah Linder (24th, 22:22.6), Ceona Johnson (77th, 26:26.3) and Jennessa Larsen (84th, 27:16.5). PEM sophomore Maddie Simon was the individual champion, topping the 105-runner girls field with a time of 19:47.2  

PEM also grabbed the girls team title, placing all five of its scoring runners in the top 15 to score 36 points. Cotter took the runner-up spot with 66 points, followed by Chatfield (82), LaCrescent-Hokah (90), LARP (119), LFC (160), GMLOS (186), St. Charles (194) and W-K (247).

Boys’ results

LARP junior Luke O’Hare continues to dominate conference competition; O’Hare pulled away in the last mile to easily top the 140-runner boys field in 17:06.8. Hoiness made another strong showing, placing sixth in 18:01.9. Buchanan cracked the top ten, placing ninth and running 18:11.8. Grady Hengel was the top-placing freshman from any team in the boy’s field, grabbing 12th place and covering the 5K course in 18:25.9.

Contributing to LARP’s second-place team finish were Mitchell Ledebuhr (29th, 19:05.9), Aaron Prinsen (32nd, 19:10.3), and Ryan Prinsen (the top-placing 8th grader in the boy’s race), who ran 19:11.8 to place 33rd. 

LaCrescent-Hokah claimed the TRC team title with 50 points. LARP, still operating without Tyler Rislov, placed second with 57. Rounding out the team scoring were Chatfield (83), PEM (86), St. Charles (141), LFC (187), W-K (195), Cotter (212), Kingsland (245), Dover-Eyota (253), and GMLOS (259).

Schedule

Both LARP teams will compete in the Section 1A meet on Thursday, Oct. 24, at Northern Hills Golf Course in Rochester. The top two teams and top eight individual finishers at the section meet will advance to the MSHSL Class A State Meet. “There are 23 teams in the Section,” said Kingsbury. “The boys team has a shot at qualifying, but we have never beat the favorites, Lake City and LaCrescent, when they’ve had a full team. But we’ll have Tyler (Rislov) back, so it will be exciting. The girls have really come a long ways, but this Section is really tough. I expect Lake City, PEM, and Stewartville to be the top teams in the girls field.” The MSHSL State Cross Country meet will be held Nov. 2 at St. Olaf College in Northfield.