Falcons, Wolverines compete at Denver Cross Country Invitational Monday

Aplington-Parkersburg and Dike-New Hartford were among a field of mostly familiar competition at Monday’s Denver Cross Country Invitational. The Wolverine girls placed fourth, the Falcon girls placed ninth, the Wolverine boys placed sixth and the Falcons had no boys varsity competitors.

Dike-New Hartford senior Izzy Houts was the top local finisher, placing fifth with a season-best time of 20:22.7. She says she and the team put together a strong showing.

"There's a lot of great competition out here," Houts says. "I'm really happy to be running with my teammates. We push each other. The sport is really mental and physical, that's what I'm battling with. My teammates and I work together, we battled mentally, and came out pretty good."

Senior Ashley Schipper led the Falcons by placing 29th in a time of 23:10.1. She says the recent addition of some fellow seniors has provided extra competition as they work toward the goal of peaking at the end of the season.

"I was the only one in my grade out for a while," Schipper says. "Now there's seven or eight seniors. It's fun to be friends, but also having people to compete with every day."

The top local boys finisher was Dike-New Hartford freshman Brady Hartsock, placing 25th in a season-best time of 20:04.8. Head Coach Will Reingardt was proud of the freshman for taking on the challenges of the coaching staff.

"Sometimes he's been up in our top, and sometimes he's been around our five and six spot. We challenged him to start up a lot closer than what he had been doing the last few races. I think he handled it well. He was excited about his time and how he felt throughout his race. I'm proud of Brady for stepping up to our challenge. We're obviously looking to get him and the rest of the kids lower in their times."

Aplington-Parkersburg will return to action Thursday at Grundy Center. Dike-New Hartford will be at Jesup on Tuesday, September 26.

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