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Gael girls earn silver

—Photo by Troy Banning/Daily Freeman-Journal St. edmond’s aubrey bemrich (RIGHT) competes during the NCC cross country meet.

WEBSTER CITY — For the second consecutive year, and fourth time since 2014, the St. Edmond girls earned silver at the North Central Conference cross country meet.

Led by three Top-10 finishers, the Gaels tied Algona for runner-up honors, earning second thanks to the 28th place finish of junior Sydney Schulte.

Iowa Falls-Alden was the overall champion, ending Humboldt’s run of six straight league titles. The Wildcats placed fourth overall led by individual winner Bryce Gidel, who became the first-ever four-time NCC champ.

“I can’t remember a day in 21 years of coaching that we’ve had a better day from middle school through high school,” SEHS head coach Mike Szalat said. “I’m just really, really excited and beaming from what the kids did.

“And hat’s off to Bryce Gidel because what she did is just an incredible accomplishment.”

Aubrey Bemrich, a junior, led St. Edmond, as she clocked a time of 21:27 to place fourth overall behind Gidel, Iowa Falls-Alden’s Ellie Meyer and Algona’s Carley Mullins.

“Getting to compete against all of these bigger schools really pushes us as a team,” Bemrich said. “We were really focused going into this race because we knew we could compete with them and we definitely did.

“Placing fourth against these girls is very rewarding. They are a really tough group of girls to run against and I am very lucky to get to compete against them.”

Aleksandria Aljets was ninth overall in 22:00 with Anna Kolacia placing 10th in 22:12. Aljets is a sophomore and Kolacia just a freshman.

“It was a tough race with lots of tough competition,” Schulte said. “I wanted to go out and do my best for my team because I knew that they were trying hard for me. This especially shows that every individual place really matters.

“I knew that all the team places would be close and I’m very happy with the place we accomplished.”

Kelli Kersten finished 22nd and Caroline Shelly 25th. Like Bemrich, Aljets, Kolacia and Schulte, they are underclassmen as well.

“Getting second as a team only makes us want to work harder for the rest of the season and especially next year,” Bemrich said. “I’m very proud of my team and it’s great to see all of the encouragement on the team this year.”

The Gael boys provided another podium placing, as they were third overall behind only Humboldt and Webster City.

Jed Tracy earned a Top-10 finish in his final NCC meet, as the senior was 10th to lead the Gaels in 18:14. Freshman Aaron Lursen placed 12th and junior Grant Heldorfer was 13th.

“Going into the race, we all were hungry for a high place,” Tracy said. “Monday, Coach Szalat, being the motivational guy he is, was telling both teams what we could do. With that, it put a positive mindset through our heads and boosted our confidence.

“Claire Fleming dropped a significant amount of time in her race, as well as Zach Loerts. For both guys and girls, placing in the Top-3 with many people running PRs, it has everybody hungry for more.”

Hayden Mayer and Ronnie Orres gave St. Edmond two more Top-25 finishes, placing 20th and 23rd overall.

“Jed has just been a phenomenal leader for these guys,” Szalat said. “He just really wants to get the entire team to state and he’s pushing them so much. Everybody just got better as the race went on.”

Districts are scheduled for next Thursday with the state meet set for Nov. 2 in Fort Dodge at Lakeside Golf Course.

“This gives us a big confidence boost heading into the postseason,” Tracy said. “And I can speak for both teams by saying that we want to be running on November 2.”

NORTH CENTRAL CONFERENCE CROSS COUNTRY

Boys

Team Standings

1. Humboldt, 29; 2. Webster City, 63; 3. St. Edmond, 78; 4. Clear Lake, 87; 5. Algona, 129; 6. Iowa Falls-Alden, 159; 7. Hampton-Dumont, 200; 8. Clarion-Goldfield/Dows, 206.

Individual Top-5

1. Quinton Orr, Humboldt, 16:19; 2. Eric Wittrock, Humboldt, 17:20; 3. Devon Coon, Humboldt, 17:25; 4. Justin Wright, Clear Lake, 17;31; 5. Jacob Willson, Webster City, 17;33.

Humboldt — 1. Orr; 2. Wittrock; 3. Coon; 9. Trevor Jacobson, 18:04; 14. Carter Theesfeld, 18:20; 24. Jackson Chambers, 19:17.

Webster City — 5. Willson; 6. Jose Ramirez, 17:59; 8. Matthew Perin, 18:01; 17. Cole Reiling, 18:48; 27. Kasey Porter, 19:25; 29. Jackson Moberly, 19:37; 38. Reece Sadler, 20:38.

St. Edmond — 10. Jed Tracy, 18:14; 12. Aaron Lursen, 18:19; 13. Grant Heldorfer, 18:20; 20. Hayden Mayer, 19:00; 23. Ronnie Orres, 19:13; 30. Drew Szalat, 19:41; 40. Zach Loerts, 20:43.

Algona — 11. Ryan Stundahl, 18:18; 22. Brandon Steil, 19:06; 31. Bobby Erickson, 19:45; 32. Nick Brown, 19:46; 33. Nick Hardman, 19:54; 34. Caden Weber, 19:57; 36. Dane Nygaard, 20:26.

Clarion-Goldfield/Dows — 15. Isaiah Nebbe, 18:34; 44. Nick Carpenter, 21:12; 48. Jackson Beisel, 21:52; 49. Jacob Ingebritson, 21:57; 50. Luke Brownell, 22:05; 51. Alex Greving, 22:54.

Girls

Team Standings

1. Iowa Falls-Alden, 50; 2. St. Edmond, 70; 3. Algona, 70; 4. Humboldt, 71; 5. Webster City, 123; 6. Clear Lake, 155; 7. Clarion-Goldfield/Dows, 168; 8. Hampton-Dumont, 200.

Individual Top-5

1. Bryce Gidel, Humboldt, 19:05; 2. Ellie Meyer, Iowa Falls-Alden, 19:15; 3. Carley Mullins, Algona, 21:16; 4. Aubrey Bemrich, St. Edmond, 21:27; 5. Teah Miller, Iowa Falls-Alden, 21:31.

St. Edmond — 4. Bemrich; 9. Aleksandria Aljets, 22:00; 10. Anna Kolacia, 22:12; 22. Kelli Kersten, 23:03; 25. Caroline Shelly, 23:17; 28. Sydney Schulte, 23:33; 32. Jacey Ash, 23:58.

Algona — 3. Mullins; 6. Moriah Knapp, 21:36; 8. Brooklyn Helmers, 21:52; 19. Ella Lawson, 22:53; 34. Eliza Schultz, 24:23; 46. Allison Casey, 26:33; 47. Taylor Kelly, 27:20.

Humboldt — 1. Gidel; 12. Allison Hoag, 22:19; 14. Kirstyn Beaman, 22:24; 18. Grace Smith, 22:52; 26. Kali Beaman, 23:20; 27. Brett Harklau, 23:28; 30. Shelby Hayden, 23:40.

Webster City — 11. Kaelyn Butz, 22:17; 15. Jacie Crutcher, 22:26; 23. Emma Peck, 23:08; 33. Allison Oswald, 24:10; 41. Ella Hansen, 26:05; 44. Brynna Croy, 26:30.

Clarion-Goldfield/Dows — 17. Raven Kinnetz, 22:46; 31. Waldina Villanueva, 23:55; 35. Makalya Pulido, 24:52; 36. Natalie Kirstein, 24:57; 49. Kylie Klaver, 27:53; 51. Alisha Vatne, 29:40; 52. Lauren Hansch, 29:41.