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Varsity XC teams take third, fourth at Hillsboro

By Staff | Aug 30, 2019

Kadin Neppl (left) and Dawson Schepp at the Hillsboro/Central Valley Early Bird Invitational.

On the heels of a preseason North Dakota high school coaches’ poll ranking Rugby High’s cross country varsity girls second among Class B teams, the Panthers traveled to the Hillsboro/Central Valley Early Bird Invitational last Saturday in Hillsboro.

The Panther girls and boys competed against both Class A and Class B schools in the event, both squads placing in the top four teams overall.

Head Coach Bill Jansen described the meet as a “good start.”

“(It’s) nice for the kids to get a meet under their belt,” he added. “Having both classes amps up the competition and will only make us better. Both teams look very competitive and if we can stay healthy and improve throughout the season we should be successful at the end of the year.”

Rugby’s girls team was 16 points above fourth place Valley City and 24 points behind second place Grand Forks Central. West Fargo took first place on the meet with 50 points.

Quinn Neppl who ranked fifth in individual Class B girls rankings in the same preseason poll took 10th place on the meet with a time of 20:16. Teammate Keely Arnston was just 30 seconds behind for a 12th place finish; and fellow Panther Brooklyn Bartsch was just 10 seconds behind Arnston for a 14th place finish.

Rounding out the girls finishers were Amelia Shepard (18th – 21:07); Ella Jacobson (27th – 21:50); Kendyl Hager (30th – 21:55); Ellie Duchscherer (32nd – 22:06); Rylie Suchor (42nd – 23:22); Joey Wolf (50th – 23:58); Megan Schmaltz (58th – 24:37); Mikaylee Livedalen (59th – 24:42); Kristina Brossart (69th -26:25) and Anna Clements (72nd – 27:04).

Led by Kadin Neppl, who took eighth with a time of 17:33, the varsity boys team finished 56 points ahead of fifth place Mayville-Portland-Clifford-Galesburg and 15 points behind third place Thompson (who received votes in the poll).

Teammate Dawson Schepp was just four seconds behind Kadin Neppl for a ninth place finish. Fellow Panther Austin Dibble was just 14 seconds behind Schepp for a 12th place finish. Rounding out the finishers for the varsity boys were Riley Odden (50th – 20:26); Robert Dibble (53rd – 20:35); and Trenton Sanford (88th – 26:37).

Kinsey Arnston led the junior high/junior varsity girls with a ninth place finish. The girls took fifth place as a team, scoring 60 points ahead of Lisbon and 23 points behind Carrington. Rounding out the finishers for the junior high/junior varsity were Haley Mayer (29th – 14:46); May Geisinger (32nd – 14:57); Jaclyn Duchscher (35th – 15:01); Sophie Oppen (45th – 15:32); Ashlyn Dibble (47th – 15:36); Mya McNeff (49th – 15:45); and Braelynn Oppen (73rd – 19:10).

Aden Jensen (29th – 13:13) led the Rugby junior high/junior varsity boys to a ninth place finish as a team. Rounding out the finishers were Kristian Fritz (47th – 13:58); Connor Klein (57th – 14:37); Maddex Kirchofner (61st – 15:29); Ethan Sveet (65th – 15:40); and Noah Herrington (72nd – 16:59).

Cross Country teams competed in Velva on Thursday. The next action for the teams will be a trip to Dunseith Tuesday, Sept. 3.

– Tribune Staff Report

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