Schut, Ellens run to State

Schut, Ellens run to State

Countdown to Prom

by Taylor Burns

“Step to the line.”
They took one deep breath in, and then BANG. For some, that bang was the last they will ever hear in their cross country career. For others, it was a once-in-a-life-time chance to make it to State. On Oct. 22 at the district cross country meet in Columbus, Iowa, PCM freshman Payton Schut and junior Chris Ellens raced the 5K that qualified them for the State cross country meet. Runners have to place at least 15th to go individually. Schut just made the cut at 15th out of 71 girls in 21:15.62. Ellens crossed the finish line in 11th place, but because of the disqualification of the Davis County runner who finished first, Ellens’ final placing was 10th out of 87 boys. He ran a 17:25.49. Both Schut and Ellens will be running at State on Saturday, Oct. 31, in Fort Dodge. Schut will run at 1 p.m. with Ellens following her at 1:30 p.m.
“When I crossed the finish line, all I thought was ‘I did it,’ and I was really happy and proud of myself, but I mostly just wanted to find Jayci to thank her for an amazing season and for pushing me to do my best,” Schut said.
Junior Jayci Vos, who has typically been racing right along with Schut, fell back and placed 25th with a time of 22:26.08, and right behind Vos was sophomore Baylee Smith, who ran a 22:34.66 and placed 27th. Freshman Megan Townley wasn’t too far back from them, either. She placed 33rd with a time of 22:52.31. Freshman Sara Dudley finished her race in 24:25.24. The Morgans stayed together once again: Senior Morgan Novak ran a 23:34.96 and finished in 54th place, near freshman Morgan Uhlenhopp in 55th place with a time of 24:55.81.
Overall, the girls’ team finished in fifth place with 135 points out of nine teams.
“We need to keep training hard. Just because we’re going to State doesn’t mean our season is over,” Ellens said.
For the boys, sophomore Blake Lee wasn’t too far off the cut-off mark to go to State in 21st place, finishing with a time of 18:20.30. The next Mustang runner, sophomore Noah Henkenius, finished in in 63rd place and came across the finish line in 20:17.45. Sophomore Brady North wasn’t far behind in 66th place, finishing with a time of 20:27.22. Senior Andres Vargas ran his last high school cross country race and finished in 81st place with a time of 21:09.92. Junior Mark Bruxvoort finished his race in 21:40.88 in 84th place, while senior Max Van Gorp finished in 87th place with a time of 22:42.38.
Both Ellens and Schut plan to practice to their best ability to do the best they can at State.
Head Coach Eric Karr, with a successful season said, “Obviously she [Payton] was showing really good times as a freshman, but I just knew her time was coming. I’ve had the privilege of watching her grow as a runner and a person throughout middle school. I’m so happy for her…We started the year wondering if Chris could get it done. As the year progressed we started talking about State as a real possibility. Then, by the time State qualifying got here, it turned into me saying, ‘Run like you have been. Run like you are capable, and you will make it to State.’ I’ve also had the privilege of watching Chris progress through his cross country seasons. He is one of the most dedicated, hardest working guys I have ever worked with.”
Come up to Fort Dodge on Saturday, Oct. 31, to support your fellow Mustangs as they participate in the State cross country meet.