Albert Lea boys’ cross country team competes at state, places 13th

Published 2:30 pm Sunday, November 6, 2022

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The Albert Lea boys’ cross country team earned their way to the Minnesota state meet for the second consecutive year.

Taking place at St. Olaf College Saturday afternoon, the Tigers finished in 13th place with three individuals placing in the top 100 out of 170 runners.

Leading the way for the Tigers was senior Gavin Hanke, finishing in 17th place with a time of 16:18.93. Junior Isaiah McGaffey came in 99th with a time of 17:33.71, and senior Pacey Brekke finished right behind in 100th place with a time of 17:33.90. Rounding out the scoring runners for Albert Lea was freshman Ty Stout in 107th place with a time of 17:40.22 and senior Luke Wangsness in 149th place with a time of 18:32.16.

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“The coaching staff was proud of the effort that the boys demonstrated at the state meet,” said head coach Jim Haney. “Running against the best in the state, Albert Lea showed it has a very good team with a 13th place finish. The boys ran times that were near the section times last week and they competed well during the race.”

Also running for the Tigers, but missing out on the team score were freshman Andrew Tscholl in 152nd place with a time of 18:38.16 and senior Patrick Holcomb in 160th place with a time of 19:21.94.

“The cross country team will miss the senior leadership provided by the six graduating seniors: Gavin Hanke, Pacey Brekke, Luke Wangsness, Patty Holcomb, Trey Shaw and Jai Maligaya,” Hanke said. “These seniors took the program to a new level. Going to state in back-to-back years is a great accomplishment, and the team could not have achieved its goals without the leadership and competitive spirit of these six runners. The coaching staff wishes them all the best as they move forward to the next step in their personal journey.”

The team portion of the meet was won by Mankato East with a final score of 111. Belle Plaine senior Emmett Gerres won the meet with a time of 15:13.62.