Moose Lake Star Gazette - Serving Carlton and Pine Counties Since 1895

By Scott Olson
Moose Lake Star Gazette 

Four runners head to state meet


Scott Olson

Four Moose Lake/Willow River/Barnum cross country runners are heading to state competition. They are Ethan Olson, Sydney Bexell, Kyle Skelton and Savannah Gamst.

On Thursday, October 29, the Moose Lake/Willow River/Barnum cross country varsity teams were at the Cloquet Country Club for the Section 7 A championships. The weather, though not much of an issue to the runners, was a cool 45 degrees with a light mist.

The girls varsity started the day and finished strong. Last year they had a seventh place finish and were hoping to improve on it. They ran their hardest and for that they were rewarded with a fifth place finish out of 14 teams with two girls qualifying for the state meet - Savannah Gamst seventh in 20:36 and Sydney Bexell l0th in 20:41. Helping their team was Nicole Tekippe 30th in 21:41, Sarah Michels 37th in 22:18, Laya Danelski 56th in 23:11, Sophie Richardson 68th in 23:59 and Mallory Agurkis 75th in 24:29. A total of 107 runners were in the girls race.

The boys varsity was also hoping to improve from a sixth place finish last year, but held steady and finished sixth out of 16 teams this year. The big plus for them was they also qualified two boys for the state meet - Ethan Olson second in 17:11 and Kyle Skelton 14th in 18:06. Helping their team was Jacob Danelski 37th in 18:50, Mark Fossum 47th in 19:08, Henry Collier 58th in 19:19, Nick Furey 64th in 19:37 and Aaron Body 72nd in 19:48. A total of 123 runners were in the boys race.

The four runners head to St. Olaf College in Northfield on November 7 for the Minnesota State High School League cross country meet.

State competition history

Scott Olson

Moose Lake/Willow River/Barnum runners compete October 29 at the Cloquet Country Club for the Section 7A championships. They are, front: Coriella Sheetz (sub), Sophie Richardson, Mallory Agurkis, Nicole Tekippe, Laya Danelski, Sarah Michels, Savannah Gamst, Sydney Bexell and assistant coach Sarah Thompson. Back: assistant coach Gage Mohelsky, Aaron Bode, Henry Collier, Mark Gossum, Nick Furey, Ethan Olson, Kyle Skelton, Jacob Danelski and coach Adam Wheelan.

Looking back to 1991 in the Minnesota State High School League meet results for girls and boys cross country, it appears from 1991 to 1995 no runners qualified. In 1996 a girls team from Barnum qualified, as did one boy in 1997 from MLWR. In 1998 one girl from Barnum and a boys team from MLWR in 1999 qualified. Nobody qualified in 2000 and one boy in 2001 from MLWR.

In 2002 MLWR and Barnum merged into one cross country team. From 2002 until 2011 no runners from those teams qualified for state.

In 2012, with Adam Whelan as the new coach of the ML/WR/B Rebels cross country team, freshman Nicole Tekippe qualified for the state meet and finished 61st out of 175 runners.

In 2013 Sarah Thompson joined as an assistant coach. That year two runners qualified, sophomore Nicole Tekippe finished 55th out of 174 and Chase Peterson finished 139th out of 175.

In 2014 freshman Ethan Olson qualified for state and finished 111th out of 176.

Recently, in 2015, Gage Mohelsky was added as an assistant coach and four individuals, two girls and two boys, qualified for the state meet at St. Olaf College in Northfield on November 7. They are eighth-grader Gamst, junior Bexell, sophomore Olson and senior Skelton.


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