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Laker runners finish well on home turf

Michael Okeson heads down the backstretch during Thursday's cross country meet. Photo by Brian Basham1 / 4
Kenzie Ostlie was the Laker girls' top finisher. Photo by Brian Basham2 / 4
Senior Austin Clem sprints down the final leg of the boy's run Thursday. Photo by - Brian Basham3 / 4
The Laker girls cross country team starts their race during Thursday's Rotary Invitational at Lakeview Golf Course. Photo by Brian Basham4 / 4

There were good improvements for both the Detroit Lakes boys' and girls' cross country teams during the Laker Rotary Invite Thursday at Lakeview Golf Course.

The Laker girls won their half, while the DL boys finished second.

"The majority of the kids ran faster than they did in the first meet in Moorhead last week," said Laker girls' head coach Jon Freeman. "Our course has many more hills than Moorhead's, so I'm always hoping to have equal or better times (for the Laker Invite)."

There was some place switching going on for the Laker girls, as eighth grader Kenzie Ostlie was the first in at fourth place with a time of 17:21.

Sophomore Abby Ullyott, who didn't finish the Moorhead meet due to a back spasm flare up, was fifth overall with a 17:41 mark.

"Kenzie had a 30-second improvement from Moorhead and Abby had a good race after she didn't finish in Moorhead," Freeman said.

Junior Mackenzie Foltz, who was DL's lead runner a week ago, was eighth, while freshman Sarah Schumacher finished ninth.

Rounding out DL's team in 11th through 14th place were junior Anne Holzgrove, senior Elisa Roe, junior Rachel Wentz and sophomore Paige Blonigan.

Freshman Haley Groth was right behind the Laker pack in 16th.

"It's nice seeing that mixing up in finishes," Freeman said. "We don't have that superstar who will lead every meet, so this group's strength will be to stick together."

Frazee freshman Holly McCamant finished 18th with a 19:36 time, while Lake Park-Audubon was led in by freshman Hannah Strom in 20th at 20:10.

Winning the race was West Central freshman Abigail VanKempen with a 16:32 time, which was five seconds faster than Pelican Rapids' junior Emily Bakken.

The Laker girls' junior varsity team literally ran a perfect race by claiming the top six slots and a score of 15 points.

"That's very rare to do, no matter on what level," Freeman said.

The DL boys finished second to Pelican Rapids, 45-69, as senior Mike Okeson led the way for the Lakers in third with a time of 18:47.

Junior Jacob Fritz was 10th at 19:27, while junior Isaac Clem took 15th, freshman Austin Askelson 18th, sophomore Cade Benson 23rd and senior Austin Clem finished 24th.

Frazee junior Tristan Watchorn was 11th, while LP-A's Sam Whitehead took 33rd.

The Lakers will be competing in Little Falls Thursday, starting at 4:15 p.m. The course will be much more flat, as DL will see some top section competition.

(Follow Brian Wierima on Twitter at DLSportsGuy.)

Laker results

Detroit Lakes Rotary Invite at Lakeview Golf Course, Thursday, Sept. 6.

Girls team results: Detroit Lakes 23, Pelican Rapids 38, Hawley/Ulen-Hitterdal 79.

DL girls results: 4. Kenzie Ostlie 17:21; 5. Abby Ullyott 17:41; 8. Mackenzie Foltz 17:56; 9. Sarah Schumacher 18:02; 11. Anne Holzgrove 18:06; 12. Elisa Roe 18:09; 13. Rachel Wentz 18:27; 14. Paige Blonigan 18:35; 16. Haley Groth 18:46.

Frazee girls results: 18. Holly McCamant 19:36.

Lake Park-Audubon girls results: 20. Hannah Strom 20:10; 23. Ashlyn Strom 21:11; 28. Shania Alder 23:18.

Boys team results: Pelican Rapids 45, Detroit Lakes 69, Hawley/Ulen-Hitterdal 83, West Central 96, Frazee 103, Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton 106.

DL boys results: 3. Mike Okeson 18:47; 10. Jacob Fritz 19:27; 15. Isaac Clem 19:49; 18. Austin Askelson 20:02; 23. Cade Benson 20:49; 24. Austin Clem 20:57.

Frazee boys results: 11. Tristan Watchorn 19:33; 14. John Geis 19:45; 22. Jordan Olson 20:42; 28. Byron Byer 21:23; 30. Michael Fletcher 21:36.

Lake Park-Audubon boys results: 33. Sam Whitehead 21:5237. Dominic Todd 22:53.

Brian Wierima
Detroit Lakes Newspapers Sports Editor for the last 15 years. St. Cloud State University graduate, who hails from Deer Creek, MN.