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Card cross country: Top-shelf runners head to Alexandria tomorrow

'The 38th annual Lions Cross Country "Meet of Champions" will again feature the cream of the crop as more than 1,300 runners from 21 schools are expected to be on hand at Arrowwood Resort and Conference Center tomorrow, Saturday.

Leading the list of premier runners is Alexandria junior Jamie Piepenburg, ranked No. 2 in the State Class AA polls.

Piepenburg, who has finished third at the state meet in both of the last two years, will lead a field that includes six state-ranked individuals and four state-ranked teams.

Last year, Piepenburg and the Cardinal girls' and boys' teams battled unseasonably cold weather, biting winds and snow.

This year, runners should fare much better as the forecast calls for cloudy and unseasonably warm weather.

Among the serious competitors facing the Redbird junior are Monticello's No. 3 ranked Erica Seidenkranz and her sister, Amber, who is ranked No. 11 in Class AA.

Roseville's Becca Dyson, ranked No. 4 in Class AA, and Kaila Urick of Chaska, ranked No. 6, will also be in the field.

Topping the field of ranked girls' teams will be Class AA's No. 2 Monticello and Class A's No. 2 St. Cloud Cathedral.

The boys' division is not as heavily packed with power, but is strong, nonetheless as Stillwater, ranked No. 4 in Class AA, and Roseville, ranked No. 5, are in the field for 2010.

Individually, St. Cloud Cathedral's Grant Winterheiser, No. 3 in Class A, as well as Class AA's No. 7 Bryant Blahnik of Red Wing and No. 11 Tom Linter of Stillwater are expected to run.

Opening the day for the premier event will be the junior high girls' division race set for 10:30 a.m., followed by the junior high boys' division at 10:50.

At 11:15 a.m., the junior varsity girls will run, followed by the JV boys at 11:45.

At 12:15 p.m., the varsity girls are set to take off, to be followed by the varsity boys at 12:45 p.m.

An awards ceremony is set for 1:15 p.m.

THE BEST OF THE BEST

STATE-RANKED GIRLS

CLASS AA - No. 2 Jamie Piepenburg, Alexandria; No. 3 Erica Seidenkranz, Monticello;

No. 4 Becca Dyson, Roseville; No. 6 Kaila Urick, Chaska; No. 9 Taylor Scholl, Prior Lake; No. 11 Amber Seidenkranz, Monticello

STATE-RANKED GIRLS' TEAMS

Chanhassen - No. 10

Monticello - No. 2

Prior Lake - No. 5

Roseville - No. 6

STATE-RANKED

BOYS' TEAMS

Red Wing No. 11

Roseville No. 5

Stillwater No. 4

STATE-RANKED BOYS

CLASS AA - No. 7 Bryant Blahnik, Red Wing; No. 11 Tom Linter, Stillwater

CLASS A - No. 3 Grant Winterheiser, SCC

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