OBETZ — Minster’s girls cross country team ran away to win the Division III title championship on Saturday in the state meet at Fortress Obetz in suburban Columbus.
The Wildcats finished first with 66 points, 42 ahead of second-place Liberty Center. It’s the fourth state title in five years for Minster and the program’s 14th overall.
“A little disbelief. Not that I didn’t think they could do it, but just to watch them do it was exciting,” Minster coach Jessie Magoto said. “It’s going to take a little while to sink in.”
Margaret Hemmelgarn led the Wildcats by finishing third in 18:23. Taylor Roth was ninth in 18:42, Chaney Cedarleaf was 21st in 19:13, Morgan Ketner was 42nd in 19:45 and Cameo Cedarleaf was 57th in 19:59.
“I’m just elated,” Magoto said. “Very happy for them and proud of them. They just believe in each other. They put others before themselves. We watched that in practice all the time. They get more excited to see their teammates do well than themselves. That was really big with this team this year.”
Fort Loramie’s girls squad finished third with 124 points. Anna finished 13th.
Fort Loramie’s Claire Rethman finished 11th in 18:50. Lauren Moore was 27th in 29:26, Ava Turner was 59th in 20:06, Olivia Borchers was 62nd in 20:09 and Harley Eilerman was 88th in 20:33.
Anna’s Paige Steinke was 49th in 19:51. Grace Bensman was 103rd in 20:48, Bethany Althauser was 115th in 21:01, Serenity Williamson was 126th in 21:18 and Hope Bixler was 157th in 22:23.4.
Botkins’ Brittany Arnold finished 18th overall in 19:00.7.
Anna’s Schmidt finishes 2nd in D-III boys race
Anna’s Hayden Schmidt led area runners by finishing second in the Div. III boys race.
Schmidt finished second in 15:44, 15 seconds behind Lima Perry’s Braden Yingst.
“I feel great,” Schmidt said. “I feel happy. I knew it was going to be a battle against Braden. I think I came out with a PR, so that’s great.
“… I knew it was going to be close between Braden and I. I wanted to get first. We’d raced twice before, and he’d beaten me both times. I knew it was still going to be a great race, and anything could happen.”
Schmidt was one of three area boys who finished in the top 10. Minster’s Alex Albers finished sixth in 15:59 and Fort Loramie’s Colten Gasson finished eighth in 16:04.
Fort Loramie’s boys squad came in third with 109 points, 16 behind first-place East Canton and one behind second-place Mount Gilead.
Botkins finished sixth, Minster finished seventh and Anna finished 14th.
Aside from Gasson, Colin Gasson finished 19th in 16:18, Trey Ranly finished 36th in 16:44, Frank Rethman finished 56th in 16:57 and Adam Ballas finished 79th in 17:11.
Botkins’ Keaton Schnippel finished 52nd in 16:55. Carter Pleiman was 81st in 17:14, Parker Schnippel was 82nd in 17:14, Carson Brown was 94th in 17:24 and Shane Weatherhead was 98th in 17:29.
Aside from Albers, Jack Grieshop was 85th in 17:17, Ryan Halpin was 97th in 17:28, Jim Trzaska was 113rd in 17:41 and Tyler Prenger was 114th in 18:23.
Aside from Schmidt, John Young was 110th in 17:38, Noah Deeren was 114th in 17:44, Aaron Haynes was 123rd in 17:48 and Collin Frilling was 142nd in 18:20.
Jackson Center’s Kellen Reichert finished 24th in 16:25, Houston’s Hunter Mowery finished 77th in 17:10 and Russia’s Brayden Monnin finished 99th in 17:29.