After a slow start at Oelwein, Central cross country excels at MFL MarMac

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Delaney Scherf finished 29th in the meet at Oelwein, then followed that up with a ninth-place result on the Tri City course. (Photos by Bev Hamann)

Gavin Holst saw his first action as a member of the varsity team at the Sept. 2 meet, where he finished 12th out of 46 runners with a time of 19:18.

Taylor Moser turned in a 13th place finish at the Sept. 2 meet.

Brayden Finley competed hard in Central's first two cross country meets.

By Willis Patenaude, Times-Register


Central cross country got off to a respectable start in its first meet, held Aug. 31 at Hickory Grove Golf Course in Oelwein, which is typically one of the largest events of the season.


“This meet is always one of our largest with the number of teams and competitors, so we don’t worry about placing as much as about just going out hard and seeing how your body and mind handle the meet atmosphere. Now everyone has a starting point with which to work toward getting better each week,” coach Martha Bauder said. 


The starting point for the varsity girls was a ninth place finish out of 12 teams. The only medalist was Hannah Asche, who finished 20th out of 87 runners and secured the top finish for the team. Delaney Scherf followed in 29th, while Jaydin Dettman, running a course personal record, finished 51st. 


The JV girls fared about the same, with Reese Berns’ 26:24 and 25th place finish out of 174 runners leading the way. Gracie Cummer (31st), Keeley Curran (43rd) and Ashlyn Scherf (45th) all managed top-50 finishes as the team finished sixth of 11 complete teams. 


As for the varsity boys, Central sent out only two runners, Brayden Finley and Corey Weber, who finished 59th and 46th, respectively. The field consisted of 98 runners. For the JV team, Gavin Holst continued to highlight Central’s efforts, finishing fourth of 128 runners in a time of 20:04. Holst was also a ribbon winner.   


“It was good to finally get our first meet in so that everyone could get experience with a hard, full 5K and to run with other competition. From a team score aspect, with this many teams, we like to compare our finish within class 1A teams. So the varsity girls were third among 1A teams, while the JV girls were first amongst 1A teams,” Bauder said. 


Those early expectations rose quickly during Central’s meet at MFL MarMac, which took place at the Tri City Golf Course near Luana on Sept. 2. 


The varsity girls dominated the field, winning the meet with a team score of 39. All five Warrior runners finished in the top 20, with three of them placing in the top ten. Asche placed second, running a course personal record of 21:08. Dettman was third with a career best time of 22:04 and Delaney Scherf finished ninth with a season best 23:20. All three girls were also medalists. 


Central’s other two runners, Moser and Wiley, finished in 13th and 17th, respectively.


As for the JV girls, the field was heavily populated with Central runners, who accounted for 10 of the 16 runners who participated. Cummer won with a season best 25:06, while Berns finished second, Ashlyn Scherf came in third and Curran rounded out the top five. 


On the boys side, Holst saw his first action as a member of the varsity team, where he finished 12th out of 46 runners with a season best time of 19:18. Weber crossed the line in 14th with a course personal record of 19:31, while Finley came home in 20:17, a course personal record. Central did not qualify for the team competition, which was won by Maquoketa Valley.


“The team had a really good meet—from the weather to the competition—with so many of our kids having season, course or personal bests on a very hard course. Having the girls finish first was also excellent for them,” coach Mark Bauder said. 


The next meet is at Clayton Ridge on the Guttenberg Golf Course on Sept. 7. On Sept. 9, Central will run at North Fayette Valley High School. 

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