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Nick Williams improves PR 5K time by 19 seconds while leading Comets at Sam Iverson XC Invitational

Nick Williams improves PR 5K time by 19 seconds while leading Comets at Sam Iverson XC Invitational
Press photo by John Burbridge
Charles City junior Lauren Staudt was the second runner in for the Comets during the Girls Varsity Race at Thursday’s Sam Iverson Cross Country Invitational.

By John Burbridge

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GRUNDY CENTER — Charles City boys cross country coach Ryan Rahmiller hopes that someday soon that one or both of his sophomore returning state individual qualifiers will get into the 16s.

What that means is running a 5K race in under 17 minutes.

At Thursday’s Sam Iverson Invitational, Nick Williams took a big leap toward that time-span realm when he shaved 19 seconds off a previous personal-record while recording a fourth-place time of 17 minutes, 7.11 seconds.

Finishing ahead of Williams were the Grundy Center trio of junior Kaden Lynch (16:34.93, 1st), freshman Emerson Vokes (16:53.74, 2nd) and senior Brennan Sager (17:04.89).

That collective effort helped the hosting Spartans win the Boys Varsity Race with 58 team points, 4 points ahead of runner-up Denver.

East Marshall LeGrand placed third (96) and Charles City placed fourth (101) amid a field representing 23 schools.

“It wasn’t our best race, but we ran a competitive race,” said Rahmiller, whose Comets won the Sam Iverson Invitational last season. “We knew Grundy Center was going to be tough and so was Denver.”

Xander Graeser, Charles City’s other returning state individual qualifier, placed eighth with a time of 17:26.76 — the second fastest 5K time of his high school career.

Other scoring runners for the Comets included junior Isaac Thompson, whose 15th-place time of 18:02.98 nearly matched a PR; junior Lukas Vance (18:55.77); and senior Anders Haglund, whose 41st-place time of 19:04.08 bested a previous PR by 15 seconds.

“Carter Haberkorn also set a personal-record by 4 seconds,” Rahmiller said of his sophomore, who was the Comets’ “tiebreaker” runner with a 48th-place time of 19:15.72.

In the Girls Varsity Race, Charles City senior Harper McInroy got into the “21s” for the first time of her career with a 25th-place time of 21:51.27.

With junior Lauren Staudt (22:33.50, 35th), senior Cloey Usher (22:43.73, 58th), senior Claire Eckenrod (24:06.55, 62nd) and freshman Emma Prichard (24:12.86, 64th), the Comet girls placed 12th.

Denver was the Girls Varsity winner with 60 team points.

Sumner-Fredericksburg junior Hillary Trainor was the individual winner with a time of 19:22.29.

In the Boys Junior Varsity Race, Charles City placed second to Denver.

Senior Breyer Ellison led the Comet JV with a 7th-place time of 19:22.18.

Charles City placed fourth in the Girls Junior Varsity Race. Junior Mackenzie Zweibohmer was the Comets’ top finisher with a 16h-place time of 24:47.00.

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