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2023 Cross Country State Meet Advance Release

Posted: Friday, November 3, 2023 - 1:37 PM

Cross Country23News

In late September, Minnesota high school runners participating in the Roy Griak Invitational got a preview of where they would race if they were able to earn a berth in the Minnesota State High School League’s Cross Country State Meet on Saturday, Nov. 4. The event, which features races including elite-level high school and college runners, was held at the University of Minnesota Les Bolstad Golf Course.

It is a homecoming of sorts for the Cross Country State Meet, which was held at Les Bolstad from 1964-90. The meet then shifted to St. Olaf College in Northfield where it remained through last season.

In its new, but familiar, venue, there are six races scheduled for the 5,000-meter course:

Class AAA

  • Boys: 10 a.m.
  • Girls: 10:45 a.m.
  • Awards: Approximately 11:15 a.m.

Class A

  • Boys: Noon
  • Girls: 12:45 p.m.
  • Awards: Approximately 1:15 p.m.

Class AA

  • Boys: 2 p.m.
  • Girls: 2:45 p.m.
  • Awards: Approximately 3:15 p.m.


Class A

  • Girls: Seven of the top 10 finishers from last year’s state meet return. Leading the way is Cotter’s Sonja Semling, a sophomore, who was third in 2022. Other returnees include Luverne senior Jenna DeBates, United North Central junior Angalie Aho, Staples-Motley sophomore Audrey  Brownwell, Lester Prairie junior Addison Hoof, Long Prairie-Grey Eagle senior Caroline Kuehne and Windom Area junior Kaylee Walklin. St. Cloud Cathedral, the runner-up in 2022, returns as the Section 5A champion.
  • Boys: Redwood Valley junior Will Ahrens and Luverne junior Owen Janiszeski are among the top contenders for the individual crown. Ahrens was fourth overall in 2022 and Janiszeski was two seconds behind in fifth. Heritage Christian Academy, the reigning Class A champion, has returned after winning the Section 4A crown.

Class AA

  • Girls: St. Paul Highland Park is seeking its third consecutive team championship. Pacing the Lady Scots is senior Luna Scorzelli, the reigning Class AA individual champion. Also returning in the chase for the individual championship are Hutchinson senior Isabelle Schmitz, who was runner-up in 2022, and Fairmont junior Macy Hanson, who was fourth overall.
  • Boys: Willmar junior Sully Anez and Annandale junior Sal Wirth are the top returnees to this field. Anez was third overall in 2022 and Wirth was five seconds behind in fourth. Mankato East is the defending Class AA champion and the Cougars return after winning the Section 2AA crown.

Class AAA

  • Girls: Forest Lake junior Norah Hushagen placed third at the Griak Invitational and was the top Minnesota placer. In 2022 at the state meet, she was third overall, just behind Sydney Drevlow, a junior at Hopkins. Drevlow also returns and is expected to challenge for the individual championship. Wayzata, the defending Class AAA champion, is having another banner year. The Trojans won the team title during the Griak Invitational.
  • Boys: Sam Scott, a senior at Minneapolis Southwest, was the runner-up in 2022, finishing second to running friend, Aidan Jones of nearby Minneapolis Washburn. Scott figures to be the runner to beat here. He was Minnesota’s fastest boy runner at the Griak Invitational, finishing second overall. Look for Chaska senior Nolan Sutter to also be in the lead pack. He placed fifth overall in 2022. Wayzata is the defending Class AAA champion.

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