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Card girls' cross country: Piepenburg first in Meet of Champions

Lori Mork, Echo Press Jamie Piepenburg (with sunglasses) jumped quickly into the lead during the 39th annual Alexandria Lions "Meet of Champions" Saturday at Arrowwood Resort and Conference Center. Heading into the lead with the Card senior were Alexandria runners (far right, front left to right) Bethany Hasz, Megan Hasz, (second row) Karly Betterman and Julia Sieling.

Jamie Piepenburg, Megan Hasz and Bethany Hasz proved that their presence in the State Class AA cross country polls is well deserved as the trio of Cardinal runners finished first, third and fourth in the highly-touted Alexandria Lions "Meet of Champions" at Arrowwood Resort and Conference Center Saturday.

Piepenburg, ranked No. 2 in the polls, cruised to a first place finish with an 11-second margin of victory over Jenna Truedson of Bemidji, with the two Hasz sisters on Truedson's heels.

Those finishes, along with solid finishes from the rest of the squad, propelled the girls' team to a fourth place overall finish in the meet behind Monticello, St. Cloud Cathedral and Roseville.

"Monticello is ranked number one in Class AA and Cathedral is ranked number one in Class A," said Alexandria head coach Mark Nelsen.

"Jamie, Megan and Bethany took on several of the top-ranked female runners in the state. They raced very aggressively and finished up one, three and four respectively.

"Megan and Bethany were running 2-3 much of the race, but were outkicked by Jenna Truedson from Bemidji in the final 200 meters," said Nelsen. Both Megan and Bethany ran season best times.

"Karly Betterman attacked the course early on and struggled over the final 1,200 meters as a result," he said. "Julia [Sieling] raced just the opposite. She was conservative early in the race, but ran very strong over the final 1,200 meters, passing runners the entire distance.

"Kristin Egenes also ran her fastest time of the season, earning a position on the varsity for the CLC championship."

Egenes finished 13th in the junior varsity race with a time of 17:00.



GIRLS' VARSITY - 1. Monticello 48, 2. St. Cloud Cathedral 108, 3. Roseville 158, 4. Alexandria 175, 5. Stillwater 188, 6. White Bear Lake 192, 7. Chanhassen 197, 8. Willmar 222, 9. Bemidji 275, 10. Chaska 298, 11. Mounds View 313, 12. Buffalo 315, 13. Sartell 317, 14. Red Wing 344, 15. Minnehaha Academy 364, 16. Eastview 378, 17. Marshall 414, 18. New Prague 442, 19. Rocori 513, 20. Windom 572, 21. Thief River Falls 589, 22. St. Cloud Apollo 604, 23. Cretin-Derham Hall 640.

INDIVIDUAL CHAMPION - Jamie Piepenburg, Alex, 14:20.

ALEXANDRIA RESULTS - 1. Piepenburg, 3. Megan Hasz 14:32, 4. Bethany Hasz 14:33, 79. Julia Sieling 16:42, 88. Karly Betterman 16:50, 100. Emily Thul 17:00, 106. Kaci McCoy 17:12.