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Just a hair: boys cross country narrowly misses out on consecutive State championship, girls look ahead to the future

Interstate Studio 51706

Interstate Studio 51706

Arpan Das, Sports Reporter

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The Lancer boys cross country team came third in Class Four State meet with a very close final result. They finished with 117 points, only one point behind second place and eight behind winner Rockhurst.

Austin Hindman had the fastest time in all of Class Four and came in first with a time of 15:22.30. Also in the top five in Class Four was Tommy Laarman, who had a time of 15:52.34, who ended just .24 seconds ahead of sixth place.

“The race itself was exciting; it was very fast. Typically, the race would be about eight seconds slower than it was this year, so the race was much faster this year. It was extremely competitive. Those tops spots were fought for. The week before in Sectionals, I had lost fifth place to a guy in Farmington by .02 seconds, so that was an extremely hard kick that I lost. That was the only thing I was thinking of when I was kicking at the end, and it was enough to hold him out and I was able to beat him by just a hair,” Laarman said.

Rounding out the top times for Lafayette were Nassim Oufattole who came in 41st, Harrison Brown who came in 56th, and David Golder who came in 86th.

The two senior boys, Hindman and Laarman, leave as some of the best runners in Missouri’s history with their numerous first place finishes and dominant performances at high level meets.

Laarman took some time to reflect on the season and left some words for next year’s runners.

“We did extremely well this season. We have a ton of young guys on the team, so throughout the season, our focus was baby steps, constant progression, and I think we did that. We placed sixth at Forest Park, but then we moved up to second at our next big race, which was Chili Pepper, and then our goal was to win (at State), but we weren’t able to pull that through. I am still really proud of the guys they’ve come a long way. My favorite part would be Chili Pepper. We were not expected to get second, and this is a huge multi-state race; we came out of nowhere showed up and we all raced extremely well,” Laarman said. “Going relating to State, sometimes you have to lose to learn to how to win. These guys, they’re young, they have another season and they’re going to do amazing next year. Sometimes you need to lose like at State to really make you appreciate the wins and know that you can’t take anything for granted because in a moment’s notice it can be taken from you.”

The two girls, Meg Nicholson and Mollie Rogan, also were able to qualify for State competition. The “pink sisters,” as they call themselves, had Rogan in 24th and Nicholson in 87th. The team wasn’t able to quite replicate last year’s success, but were able to get a solid foundation by having runners like juniors Rogan and Katherine Wuesthoff, and freshman Kari Kamrud gain more experience for next year.

 

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