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home : sports : sports Saturday, April 30, 2016

10/30/2013 Email this articlePrint this article 
Cal-Wheat junior Megan Slattery follows a Wilton runner during the North Cedar Invitational. Slattery became the first Warrior girl in nearly a decade to qualify for the state cross country meet as she took 10th overall at Thursday’s 1A qualifiying meet in Jesup with a time of 15:43.
Slattery takes 10th in loaded field to earn spot at state
As the times rolled in, it became more and more clear - there was a ton of running talent in the girls race of the 1A district/regional meet.

North Tama's Abi Watson led the parade of finishers, crossing the finish line in 15:17.

Nicole Miller of North Linn and Haley Schroeder of Central Elkader followed, both also finishing under 16 minutes.

So did Clayton Ridge standout Jasmine Staebler, who finished fourth.

In all, 10 runners finished under 16 minutes in the race - more than three of the other four 1A regions combined.

The last of those runners turned out to be Calamus-Wheatland junior Megan Slattery, who earned the final automatic spot at the state meet with her 10th-place finish.

It was the second time this season that Slattery finished under 16 minutes as she clocked in at 15:43 at the Tri-River conference meet a week earlier.

That time remained her best of the season, but the junior's clocking of 15:53 at the regional meet - 14 seconds better than the 11th-place finisher - was more than enough to make her Cal-Wheat's first female qualifier since Sarah Hart in 2004.

"It was an exciting day for Megan and our program," Cal-Wheat head coach Kevin Oberfoell said. "She is a very hard worker and it's great to see her get rewarded for the work she put in over the course of the season."

Behind Slattery's top-10 finish, the Warriors finished sixth as a team with 208 points. Central Elkader won the meet with 70 points, while South Winneshiek and North Linn rounded out the top-three with 94 and 108 points respectively.

Freshman Morgan VanderHeiden added a 30th-place finish for the Warriors, clocking in at 17:10, while junior Kailey Potter and sophomore Dana Koester finished just two seconds apart.

Potter finished 55th overall with her time of 18:09, while Koester's clocking of 18:11 was good for 57th.

Wrapping up the Warriors' team score was junior Sierra Rodriguez, who took 75th in the race with a time of 18:55.

Cal-Wheat's Cole Moeller saved his best race for last in the boys portion of the meet.

The freshman broke 19 minutes for the first time this season and finished 42nd overall with a clocking of 18:50.

Teammate Jonathan Licht posted his best time of the season too - by a single second - as he took 63rd with a time of 19:24.

David Benischek added a 79th-place finish in 19:57, while Liam Ballanger and Aaron Dierickx finished things off by placing 130th and 145th, respectively. Ballanger's time was 23:33, while Dierickx clocked in at 36:55.

The Warriors finished 15th in the team race with 424 point. Behind champion Kyle Kehoe, Denver won the meet with 50 points. South Winneshiek was second with 94 points, while Bellevue was just five points back of them.

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