After running in the Big 8 Conference meet at Lennox yesterday, the postseason has arrived for Vermillion High's cross country runners.
The Tanagers will host the Region 3A meet next Friday, seeking to qualify as many runners as possible for the state meet in Sioux Falls on Oct. 22.
Among a tough field at last Friday's Lennox Invitational, VHS junior Nathan Ford lowered his personal-best time and placed seventh among 91 runners in a time of 17:22. Parker's Duane Jongeling was the champion in 16:09.
Will Card placed 33rd in 18:34, Colin Olson ran an improved personal-best time of 18:37 for 36th place, and Jacob Ford placed 50th in 19:05. Several Tanager youngsters moved up from JV ranks to run a varsity race for the first time. Jonathan Rosales placed 72nd in 20:12, Logan Peterson 74th in 20:19, Joe Swanson 75th in 20:23 and Nate Svendsen 86th in 21:56.
The boys' team placed sixth with a team score of 121 for its four counters. Irene-Wakonda, Beresford, Harrisburg, Lennox and Garretson were ahead of Vermillion.
Alyssa Soesbe was the Tanagers' top finisher in the girls varsity event with a personal-best time of 16:16, topping her previous best by almost a full minute and earning 33rd place. Morgan Hower in 61st at 17:22 had her best time. Cheyenne Mallory, running in her first race since August, was 73rd in 18:11. Britney Sweeney had a season-best time of 18:34 for 80th place. Caitlin Britten in her first varsity race was 81st in 18:52. Sophia Taggart placed 82nd in 19:17, Jonna Lynch 84th in 21:37 and Jade Fostvedt 85th in 22:19.
Blair Gilkyson, running for the first time this season, won the JV girls race in 16:24. Coach Kelly Fischbach called it Blair's "rehab assignment," competing at the JV level in her first race back rather than being thrown to the dogs against varsity runners who have been on the courses all fall. Maddie Gregoire, Jaida Anderson and Heidi Osterberg also ran in that race.
Owen Swallow finished third in the middle school boys division in 11:36.