By Alicia Sunnarborg
The Westonka White Hawks were doubly blessed last Thursday, Oct. 24, with the Section 2AA meet being held at their home course on a gorgeous day for a run. Ninth-grader Laura Sunnarborg took full advantage of the day, earning a trip to state for the second year in a row.
Sunnarborg finished in eighth place in a time of 19:48. First place at the meet went to Isabelle Schmitz of Hutchinson.
The White Hawks girls took eighth in the section out of 17 teams, the highest spot for a Westonka girls team in over 10 years. Westonka competes in AA for cross country, the state’s highest level. Perennial powerhouse Marshall won the girls meet, with Chanhassen taking second.
Senior Kate McGown completed her Westonka cross country career by earning 40th in 21:07. Sophomore Allison Soule also cracked the Top 50, placing 48th in 21:20. Ninth-grader Emily Wendorf and seventh-graders Brooke Garlock and Gabby Callahan also contributed to the White Hawks’ eighth-place finish, with a nice final meet by senior Sarah Malchow.
The Westonka boys placed ninth in the section with their seniors leading the way. Gregoir Laboulet finished in 37th for the White Hawks in 17:46 with Alec Van Gelder close behind at 17:48 for 39th place. Sophomore Lance Nemecek stayed under 18 minutes as well, finishing in 45th place at 17:58. Also counting in the team score were sophomore Beckett James and junior Charlier Herder.
Buffalo won the boys meet and will head to state for the fourth year in a row. Mankato East took second, and Chanhassen provided the top two finishers, with Nicholas Scheller finishing the 5K in 15:39.
Congratulations to the White Hawks on a great season, and best of luck to Laura Sunnarborg at state! The state meet will be held at St. Olaf College in Northfield on Saturday, Nov. 2.