Cross country: Lions Invite SaturdayIt reads like a who’s who in Minnesota high school cross country, looking at the participants in the 36th annual Lions Cross Country “Meet of Champions” scheduled for Saturday at Arrowwood Resort and Conference Center.
Eleven state-ranked teams and 14 state-ranked individuals will be on hand for the prestigious event, and Alexandria runners are smack dab in the middle of that elite field.
Senior Drew Paradis holds the No. 10 ranking for Class AA, and leads the Cardinal boys’ team, which is ranked No. 8, while freshman Jamie Piepenburg is ranked No. 2 in the Class AA girls’ division.
The No. 1 ranked runner in Class AA, Mahad Hassan of Willmar, will again be on hand to challenge Paradis, as will a pair of Moorhead runners in No. 5 Jakob Lindaas and No. 9 Lukas Gemar.
Piepenburg also has some tough competition as No. 3 ranked Caitlin Hewes of Stillwater and Class A’s No. 2 ranked Naomi Landecker of Staples-Motley will be among Saturday’s competitors.
Last year’s boys’ competition was won by Brainerd, with individual honors going to Hassan. Paradis was third in last year’s meet.
White Bear Lake, not ranked, but receiving votes this year, won the girls’ division last season, with Landecker grabbing top individual honors. Piepenburg was seventh.
Teams competing this year include Alexandria, Becker, Bemidji, Braider, Chaska, Cretin-Derham Hall, Eastview, Fergus Falls, Little Falls, Marshall, Monticello, Moorhead, Mounds View, New Prague, Red Wing, Rocori, Roseville, St. Michael-Albertville, Sartell, St. Cloud Cathedral, St. Louis Park, Staples-Motley, Stillwater, Wahpeton, White Bear Lake, Willmar and Windom Area.
Action is set to begin at 10:30 a.m. with the junior high girls’ race, followed by the junior high boys’ race at 10:50 a.m.
At 11:15 a.m., the girl’s junior varsity race begins, with the boys’ division racing at 11:45 a.m.
The varsity girls’ action begins at 12:15 p.m., followed by the varsity boys at 12:45 p.m.
An awards ceremony will be held at approximately 1:15 p.m.