Hermanson leads MHS girls to fifth

Bobcat frosh finishes 16th in conference

T-R PHOTO BY THORN COMPTON - Marshalltown High School freshman Phoebe Hermanson, right, runs with the lead pack along the first turn of the CIML Iowa Conference cross country meet in Pleasant Hill on Thursday.

PLEASANT HILL — One year removed from finishing in last place at the CIML Iowa Conference meet, the Marshalltown girls cross country team had a simple goal when the girls lined up at Southeast Polk High School on Thursday: don’t finish last.

The Bobcats accomplished that goal by placing fifth out of six teams with a score of 133, ahead of Fort Dodge and just 16 points behind Mason City in fourth, and head coach Stacy O’Hare said she is proud of the way her girls competed in this year’s CIML Iowa meet.

“We got last last year in the conference and that was one of our goals this year was to try to compete a little bit with Mason City, I knew we would knock off Fort Dodge,” she said. “We got our job done that way, looking at the scoring you could see where we were just two or three places here and there, so that’s kind of the hard part.

“I think some of our runners competed well, they put themselves to try to knock someone off and that’s what we wanted.”

Freshman Phoebe Hermanson was the top placer once again for MHS, as she finished 16th overall with a time of 20 minutes, 45 seconds. Hermanson got off to a great start and was near the top of the pack when the girls approached the first mile mark, but she fell off a bit as the race wore on.

T-R PHOTO BY THORN COMPTON

O’Hare said Hermanson might have been a bit excited to start, but she still had a great race.

“She’s a freshman running against some of the best runners in the state of Iowa,” O’Hare said. “She went out a little quick and she’ll learn from that, but that’s kind of her nature. She likes to get out and that’s fine because sometimes you have kids who don’t want to get out. I am very happy with her performance, a freshman coming in and running against this competition on a course we aren’t familiar with, she did really well.”

O’Hare also pointed out Jade Tejada as a strong performance, as she was the second-best Bobcat placer in 26th with a 23:21.

“Jade ran well, she’s been running really well for the last couple of weeks,” O’Hare said. “She’s really stepped it up coming down the stretch, she had a huge gap where she needed to catch a Mason City runner and she did.”

Tejada just nudged out Mohawks sophomore Gwen Sewell by half a second to take 26th.

Kaci Uhde was next for Marshalltown with a 23:52 to place 29th, followed by Mary Kate Gruening in 30th with a 24:18, Aida Almanza in 32nd with a 24:33, Mia Barajas in 34th with a 24:42 and Odaly Flores in 37th with a 25:47.

Marshalltown ran with both the CIML Iowa and CIML Central teams for the conference meet, and O’Hare said that was one tough meet to cap the regular season.

“You’re probably going to see a state champ come out of this group or at least the top five,” she said. “Some great teams and we have a couple of these at our districts, but this is one of the toughest competitions we will see.”

Waukee took the CIML Iowa crown with a team score of 37, just two points ahead of Southeast Polk. Mattison Plummer was the individual champion for the Rams with a time of 19:07.

Now the Bobcats focus on their district meet, which runs next Thursday on their home course at the Marshalltown Community College campus.

O’Hare said the girls haven’t had a chance to get a feel for their home course really since the Bobcat Classic more than a month ago, but now that the ground is drying up they should get an opportunity to practice a bit before state qualifying next week.

“We do need to get out on our home course, we haven’t been out there in almost three weeks due to the rain and the course has been muddy so we didn’t want to tear it up,” she said. “Plus we don’t want to get out there and risk injury, but if we could get out on our home course this week that would be great. We won’t push ourselves too hard this week, we will just kind of take it easy.”

CIML Iowa Cross Country Meet

At Pleasant Hill

GIRLS

Team Standings — 1. Waukee 37, 2. Southeast Polk 39, 3. West Des Moines Valley 48, 4. Mason City 117, 5. Marshalltown 133, 6. Fort Dodge 181.

Individual (top 10) — 1. Mattison Plummer, SEP, 19:03; 2. Peyton Kelderman, Waukee, 19:07; 3. Grace Larkins, SEP, 19:21; 4. Helen Gould, VAL, 19:27; 5. Lauren Schulze, VAL, 19:41; 6. Sydney Schaffer, Waukee, 19:44; 7. Magda McGowan, SEP, 19:57; 8. Molly Bannister, Waukee, 20:04; 9. Isabelle Schaffer, Waukee, 20:07; 10. Emily Bright, VAL, 20:12.

WAUKEE (37) — 2. Kelderman 19:07, 6. S. Schaffer 19:44, 8. Bannister 20:04, 9. I. Schaffer 20:07, 12. Madison Judas 20:23, 13. Jessica Caraway 20:23, 21. Lindsey Kelderman 21:50.

SOUTHEAST POLK (39) — 1. Plummer 19:03, 3. Larkins 19:21, 7. McGowan 19:52, 11. Paige Blackford 20:15, 17. Natalie Clement 20:57, 23. Tarryn Hill 22:01.

VALLEY (48) — 4. Gould 19:27, 5. Schulze 19:41, 10. Bright 20:12, 14. Madeline Hollander 20:42, 15. Kamryn Ensley 20:44, 18. Teghan Booth 20:59, 20. Haley Losh 21:46.

MASON CITY (117) — 19. Hannah Thomas 21:27, 22. Sami Miller 22:01, 24. Avery Thompson 22:12, 25. Marcella Sierra 22:44, 27. Gwen Sewell 23:21, 28. Katie Cooling 23:30, 31. Brycelyn Hanson 24:25.

MARSHALLTOWN (133) — 16. Phoebe Hermanson 20:45, 26. Jade Tejada 23:21, 29. Kaci Uhde 23:52, 30. Mary Kate Gruening 24:18, 32. Aida Almanza 24:33, 34. Mia Barajas 24:42, 37. Odaly Flores 25:47.

FORT DODGE (181) — 33. Piera McBride 24:36, 35. Isabel Beekman 25:00, 36. Alexis Read 25:02, 38. Adyson Bork 27:18, 39. Kayla Smith 31:21, 40. Shayla Reed 31:26, 41. Hailey Miklo 31:26.