Warriors capture State B Cross Country title by Lindsay Nelson The Wakonda boys' cross country team clinched the Class B Boys State Championship for 2003.
The State Cross Country Meet took place on Oct. 25 at Huron on a cold, snowy fall day. It was by far one of the coldest running conditions that Wakonda has competed in this season.
The weather may have been dreary but the Warriors proved that it would not hinder their running abilities as they finished the day by winning the State B Cross Country Meet.
The State B Cross Country boys' race consisted of 111 runners and the girls' 109. The Warriors took first place honors, giving the 2002 State Champs Lower Brule second place.
The culmination of the Warrior's points tallied up for a first place finish but not only did they bring home the gold, sophomore Warrior, Robert Gregoire, took first place honors at the meet.
Gregoire won the State B Cross Country Meet with a time of 17:00.59. This was Gregoire's 10th first place finish for the year out of 14 races.
William White Light, from Lower Brule finished second behind Gregoire, 17:20.38. White Light was the 2002 State B Champion but Gregoire ended his hopes of a repeat championship by 20 seconds.
Kyle Peterson of Marion placed third, 17:30.17, followed by Wakonda's Eric Skonhovd, 17:37.68. This was Skonhovd's highest placing at the state meet and his second state meet medal.
Finishing next for the Warriors was senior Nick Skonhovd who finished 13th with a time of 18:07.36. This was Skonhovd's third medal at the state meet out of the four times he has qualified for state.
Not far behind Skonhovd was Jason Holoch and Tyler Moser. Holoch ran in for 15th place, 18:08.73, and Moser placed 34th, 18:57.08.
Eighth grader Katie Sokolowski competed in her second State B Cross Country Meet and placed 58th, 18:47.54.
The Warriors finished the season with a record of 12-2. They placed first at 12 meets and second at two meets. Wakonda also broke another school record by having four runners in the top 15 at the State B Cross Country Meet.
Coach Tony Skonhovd said, "The team did unbelievable. They were so focused on the race. They showed that they are older and more mature than other runners by not letting the miserable day ruin their focus. It was a great day in which we placed four runners in the top 15. Our main goal has always been to be state champions and we accomplished it. I couldn't ask for anything more."