The 2022 Section 1A cross country meet was chopped full of successes. Kingsland’s Garrison Hubka won his biggest race to date. Teammate Cole Kruegel repeated in making state. LARPH’s boys used their depth to earn a fourth consecutive trip to state. Chatfield’s girls battled for a state but fell just short, though Aletta Strande and Lexi Kivimagi each re-qualified. GMLOS McKenna Hendrickson accomplished the goal she just fell
short of a year ago. LFC’s Isaac Snyder moved up 12 places to also grab a state berth. Hubka was the biggest story.
It was the only rationale goal; win the 1A individual title. Kingsland senior Garrison Hubka finished eighth and fifth at the previous two section meets. He earned trips to state both years. He finished an impressive 13th last year (16:55.32) in Northfield. Three of the four guys ahead of Hubka at last year’s 2021 section race graduated, leaving this year’s race to the next top two guys, Hubka, and Pine Island’s Braxton Osterhaus. The Panther senior led the first part of the 2022 race but Hubka caught and passed his adversary (and friend). Hubka broke 17-minutes (16:55.39) to top Osterhaus (17:06.2) for 1A individual champion. He joins LARP’s Luke O’Hare (2018, 2019) as the most recent “Journal 11”runners to win 1A titles. Hubka has dropped his times each of the last three years (17:32.5 in 2020, 17:16 in 2021). It was his fifth first-place finish this year. He’s won his last three races. And taking third behind Hubka and Osterhaus was Knight senior Cole Kruegel (17:09.35). He re-qualified for state. Kruegel took ninth last season (17:25.4) at sections. He’s got three third places and a second place finish this year. And thus, the same Kingsland duo is headed back to state. The Knights took fifth as a team (of 20 total). W-K’s Cole Arens (17:11.25) and Cotter’s John Fritts (17:13.45) rounded out the individual top five.
Team-wise, LARPH continued its dynasty. Despite graduating their top two runners from a season ago, Matt Kingsbury’s group still made state. Team LARPH couldn’t repeat as 1A team champion. But they took second (84) to Cotter (75), earning to trip by virtue of their runner-up placing. It is their fourth straight state berth. They’ve taken first or second at every event this year save one (Winona Invite). Naturally, junior Ryan Prinsen was the first finisher. He has been LARPH’s #1 at every race, and did so again by taking eighth overall (17:18.12). Prinsen was the third finisher last season (15th place > 17:56.6). LARPH had four in the top 18. Tyler Betthauser was the team’s second finisher. He took 13th overall (17:48.73). The junior took 18th last season (18:10). Newcomers, freshman Aaron Ploetz (18:02.3) and 8th grader Brennan Kunst (18:08.88), impressively took 15th and 18th respectively in their first 1A Meet race. Sophomore
Matthew Sprague (30th > 18:43.03) and freshman Isaac Rasmussen (31st > 18:43.53) gave LARPH six in the top 31. Sam Adamczyk (50th > 19:23.1) rounded out the LARPH runners. All seven finished top 50 of 136 total runners. Said guys continued what they’ve done this year, or inundated other foes with depth. Each guy has notched multiple top 25 finishes. Prinsen has nine top eight finishes including four second places. Betthauser has seven top 10 finishes.
The best of the rest starts with two girls from Chatfield. Each punched their second trip to state. Eighth grader Lexi Kivimagi continued her incredibly good young career. Last year, she made state by taking sixth (20:46.7). This year, she took fourth overall (20:01.84) to go again. She finished behind 1A champion Sonja Semling of Cotter (19:07.03) and the Lake City duo of Olivia Yotter (19:47.4) and Jacey Majerus (19:58.01). Semling and Yotter repeated going 1-2. It was Kivimagi’s sixth top five finish this year. Gopher Aletta Strande (20:19.19) took seventh behind Cotter’s Hazel Freyre (20:14) and Lourdes’ Anna Peikert (20:18.72). Strande was the top senior finisher in the field. She earned a trip back to state after going freshman year (2019) following a 9th place sectional finish (20:24.6). Strande has five 1A Meet top 20’s, as she also took 15th (2018), 17th (2020), and 16th (2021) too. She has finished top seven at her last six races. Chatfield as a team was the top ‘Journal 11’ girls’ finisher. For a third straight year they took third and missed on a state trip. The
Gophers (100) were behind Lake City (61) and Lourdes (90) just ahead of Cotter (103). Sophomores Ella Bakken (20th > 21:28.8) and Charlotte Oeltjen (24th > 21:38.88) gave Nikki DeBuhr four in the top 25. GMLOS McKenna Hendrickson took eighth (20:24.5) behind Strande to earn
her spot in Northfield. The senior took 12th last season (21:14.1), just missing the state cut. She finished top eight at all seven races she ran this year with three firsts. LFC’s Isaac Snyder moved up from taking 19th last season (18:11.1) to seventh (17:17.88) to earn his first trip. The Lanesboro junior finished top eight at all nine races this year. Other “Journal 11” top 35 guy finishers were Carter Glynn (16th > 18:03.22) and Tate Georgen (17th > 18:05.69) of GMLOS, and Gabe Erding (32nd > 18:46.63) of Chatfield. One-hundred-thirty-six boys competed. Team-wise, GMLOS’ boys took seventh, Chatfield ninth, and LFC 15th (of 20). Other ‘Journal 11’ top 35 girls’ finishers were LFC’s Lillyan Kiehne (13th > 21:02.62) and the LARPH trio of Lauren Honken (25th > 21:45.26), Vada Larson (32nd > 22:04.2), and Ellie Ekern (35th > 22:05.86). Kiehne was a state entrant last season after finishing fifth (20:38.8). One-hundred-thirty girls competed. Teamwise, LARPH took seventh, LFC 11th, GMLOS 12th, and Kingsland 15th (of 19). The 5,000-meter races were held at Rochester’s Northern Hills Golf Course.