Comets girls 2nd, boys 3rd at muddy NEIC XC meet

Press photo by John Burbridge Charles City junior Phillip Bachman (No. 291) treks up a muddy grade during a wet varsity boys race at the Northeast Iowa Conference Cross Country Meet, Tuesday at Wartburg College. Bachman placed 15th to earn all-conference medalist honors.
Press photo by John Burbridge
Charles City junior Phillip Bachman (No. 291) treks up a muddy grade during a wet varsity boys race at the Northeast Iowa Conference Cross Country Meet, Tuesday at Wartburg College. Bachman placed 15th to earn all-conference medalist honors.
By John Burbridge sports@charlescitypress.com

WAVERLY — “Gentlemen,” the starter said before the gun of the varsity boys race, “the course has gotten more wet and slippery.”

“Yeah!” several runners responded in unison.

If running through puddles and mud wasn’t so much fun, Tough Mudders and other mud runs wouldn’t be so popular.

The Northeast Iowa Conference Cross Country Meet held Tuesday at Wartburg College was plagued — or enhanced — with plenty of rain and mud that reached its apex during the final race. And if the runners didn’t have fun during their races, they sure did after as virtually all the participating teams couldn’t help but take after-race photos of themselves.

From left, Emma Hoins of Waverly-Shell Rock, Kiki Connell of Charles City, and Cassidy Ihns of Crestwood break away from the pack after the first quarter mile of the varsity girls race. Ihns, Connell and Hoins would finish first, second and third, respectively.
From left, Emma Hoins of Waverly-Shell Rock, Kiki Connell of Charles City, and Cassidy Ihns of Crestwood break away from the pack after the first quarter mile of the varsity girls race. Ihns, Connell and Hoins would finish first, second and third, respectively.

The Charles City girls team was one of them. But the Comet girls would have probably cleaned up a little for a championship team photo had they not finished 4 points shy of champion Decorah (48-52).

Charles City had four Top 15 medalist runners with sophomore Kiki Connell, who managed to out-race Waverly-Shell Rock’s Emma Hoins down the stretch for a second-place 5K time of 20 minutes, 25 seconds; senior Whitney Martin, who placed eighth (21:54); freshman Lydia Staudt, who placed ninth (22:01); and junior Mackenzy Bilharz, who placed 15th (22:27).

Crestwood senior Cassidy Ihns was the varsity girls champion with a time of 20:10 for the third-place Cadets (60 points).

Charles City’s boys team placed third with 80 team points behind runner-up Waverly-Shell Rock (71) and champions Decorah (26), which was paced by senior Gus Hayes and sophomore Brady Hogan, who placed first and second with respective times of 17:35 and 18:03.

Though the conditions may have been fun for some, they surely weren’t ripe for personal-bests. But Comet senior Mason Deeter finished with a personal-best NEIC Conference Meet placing with a third-place time of 18:33.

Also medaling for the Comets were senior Nick Litterer, who placed 13th with a time of 19:10; and junior Phillip Bachman, who placed 15th with a time of 19:11.

Next up for the Comets as well for most cross country programs are the state qualifying meets next Thursday (Oct. 18).

Northeast Iowa Conference
Cross Country Meet

Oct. 9

AT WARTBURG/MAX CC COURSE

Women Varsity 5K

Team Placings

1. Decorah 48, 2. Charles City 52, 3. Crestwood 60, 4. Waukon 87, 5. Waverly-Shell Rock 109, 6. New Hampton 180.

Top 15 Medalists

1. Cassidy Ihns (C) 20:10, 2. Kiki Connell (CC) 20:25, 3. Emma Hoins (WSR) 20:28, 4. Hope Dohlman (C) 21:13, 5. Maddy Waters (W) 21:26, 6. Leila Johnson (D) 21:35, 7. Shayla Betts (D) 21:43, 8. Whitney Martin (CC) 21:54, 9. Lydia Staudt (CC) 22:01, 10. Brooke Courtney (D) 22:02, 11. Annie Mast (C) 22:19, 12. Fiona Buresh (D) 22:23, 13. Taryn Sanderman (D) 22:25, 14. Katelyn Benzing (W) 22:25, 15. Mackenzy Bilharz (CC) 22:27.

CHARLES CITY — 2. Connell, 8. Martin, 9. Staudt, 15. Bilharz, 18. Mindi Neve 22:41, 23. Mariah McKenzie 23:20, 25. Brianna Ross 23:34.

Men Varsity 5K

Team Placings

1. Decorah 26, 2. Waverly-Shell Rock 71, 3. Charles City 80, 4. Crestwood 94, 5. Waukon 136, 6. New Hampton 154, 7. Oelwein 193.

Top 15 Medalists

1. Gus Hayes (D) 17:35, 2. Brady Hogan (D) 18:03, 3. Mason Deeter (CC) 18:22, 4. Sam Kepford (WSR) 18:29, 5. Nolan Usher (NH) 18:36, 6. Spencer Peterson (D) 18:50, 7. Justin Nibaur (C) 18:53, 8. Brayden Krivachek (D) 18:59, 9. Noah Lovelace (D) 18:59, 10. Pat Bockman (D) 19:05, 11. Andrew Cummer (WSR) 19:08, 12. Willem Hawley (D) 19:09, 13. Nick Litterer (CC) 19:10, 14. Nathan Martinek (C) 19:10, 15. Phillip Bachman (CC) 19:11.

CHARLES CITY — 3. Deeter, 13. Litterer, 15. Bachman, 24. Isaac Jensen 19:44, 25. Hayden Pleggenkuhle 19:48, 27. Jacob Vais 19:56, 31. Alex Bauer 20:11.

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