FDSH runners putting in the work
Joe Jackson likes the way the Fort Dodge boys and girls cross country teams have come together both on and off the course.
The Dodger boys enter the season with five letterwiners back. The girls have some new faces, but four veteran runners.
Jackson is encouraged by the support his athletes are showing for each other.
“Both teams are fun to be around,” said Jackson, who enters his second season as head coach. “This whole program is community-minded. We ran together at the Brown’s Shoe Fit night and with the Iowa Central team out there as well.
“We picked up trash together at Oleson Park and we hope to work with PICA again. The kids are really community-oriented.”
Jackson has added even more team-building opportunities, as the Dodgers have added strength training to their season preparation.
“Scott Danielson and Dennis Canto have helped us with our strength training,” Jackson said. “It’s been helping us avoid some injuries, and has allowed us to get more workouts and different workouts in.
“We’ve logged more miles without injuries and are feeling a lot stronger. We’re progressing.”
The Dodgers lost J.R. Brandt and Justin Bohn to graduation, but have a slew of runners returning. Eric Crawford was at the top of the Dodger lineup last season. Also seeing varsity time were brothers Nathaniel and Jonathon Madden.
Carter DeLanoit, Josh Meier, Jason Hobmeier and Carter Forbes saw some varsity action as well.
“We have some guys that have raced together and are competing together,” Jackson said. “They’re right with each other and they like to run.
“Jason (Hobmeier) is coming along, and Carter (Forbes) ran some varsity last year. Gage Riley and Brayden Potter will hopefully give some increases at our six and seven spots.”
The girls’ roster is a little smaller, with only eight runners, but Jackson likes what he sees.
“This team’s work ethic is tremendous,” Jackson said. “They ran, then go back to the weight room for 30 to 35 minutes of weight training. They’ve trained hard (boys and girls), especially with our hill workouts.
“They love to compete against each other and make each other better.”
Graduate Gabby Estlund was the Dodgers’ top runner a season ago, but Jackson has seen senior Kayla Smith step in as a leader for the Dodgers.
Sophomores Piera McBride, Adyson Bork, Isabel Beekman and Alexis Read are all contenders for the top spot.
Rounding out the girls roster is sophomores Hailey Miklo and Bethany Pyland, as well as senior Lizzie Baker.
Karine Feddersen will be Jackson’s assistant coach.
Aug. 28 — at Webster City Invitational, 5 p.m.
Sept. 6 — at Marshalltown Invitational, 4:30 p.m.; 11 — at Storm Lake (boys), 5 p.m.; 15 — at Central College Invitational (girls), 12:10 p.m.; 17 — at Humboldt Invitational, 5 p.m.; 24 — at Algona Invitational, 4:45 p.m.
Oct. 4 — at Fort Dodge Invitational, 4:30 p.m.; 11 — at CIML Invitational, 4:30 p.m.
Seniors — Jordan Myer, Kaden Smith.
Juniors — Nathaniel Madden, Jonathon Madden, Logan McIlrath, Gage Riley, Billy Roberts, Jared Yoder.
Sophomores — Josh Campbell, Jaren Christy, Eric Crawford, Kyle Davis, Carter DeLanoit, Carter Forbes, Riley Hagen, Grant Harrison, Jason Hobmeier, Austin Jorgensen, Josh Meier, Brayden Potter.
Freshmen — Brayden Huse, Matthew Jass, Gavin Schillerstrom.
Seniors — Lizzie Baker, Kayla Smith.
Sophomores — Isabel Beekman, Adyson Bork, Piera McBride, Hailey Miklo, Bethany Payland, Alexis Read.