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Russ Pankonin | Johnson Publications
Longhorn runners, from left, Mason Wallin, Clay Meeske and Charles Barnes, competed in last week’s SPVA meet in Grant, their last regular season outing. Districts are next on the schedule this week.

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Russ Pankonin | Johnson Publications
Kambree Meeske, right, finishes strong and in the medals at the SPVA meet in Grant last Thursday. She and teammate Jordan Jablonski both went home with medals.

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Russ Pankonin | Johnson Publications
As the timer checks his watch, Morgan Peterson crosses the finish line at last week’s SPVA meet. She was 11th overall, just one place out of the medals.

Runners head to districts after finishing regular season

    It’s the post season for high school cross country, and Chase County runners will be in Ogallala today (Thursday) for the C4 District Meet.
    The Longhorns will join runners from 11 other Class C schools for Thursday’s meet, where state qualifiers will be determined.
    Chase County Coach Carl Zuege expects his runners to be challenged with fast races in both the boys’ and girls’ division on a flat Ogallala course.
    He admits it will be tough to qualify with the competition in this district.
    That’s especially true on the girls’ side, he said, where four of the top 10 Class C teams in the state will compete. It’s the toughest Class C girls’ district in Nebraska, he said.
    “All we can do is run our best race of the year. That’s our goal,” Zuege said.
    Chase County hopes for some individual qualifiers for the state meet in Kearney, he said.
    Thursday’s  meet will also include the District B4 races at the Crandell Creek Golf Course.
    Here is Thursday’s schedule:
    3 p.m. C4 girls
    3:35 p.m. B4 girls
    4:05 p.m. C4 boys
    4:35 p.m. B4 boys
    Other teams in  the C4 district with Chase County are Broken Bow, Chadron, Cozad, Elm Creek-Overton, Gordon-Rushville, Gothenburg, Hershey, Mitchell, Ogallala, Sidney and Valentine.
    Thursday’s forecast is calling for cool temperatures in the low 50s.
    Due to COVID-19, there are some additional rules for spectators on Thursday.
    Spectators are required to wear masks at all times with social distancing encouraged. Only coaches and managers will be allowed to give water to athletes.
    Only the athletes competing Thursday are allowed to attend.
    Medals and plaques will be given to coaches at the end of the meet. There will be no awards ceremonies.
    The top three teams and 15 individuals will qualify for the Class C state meet Oct. 23 in Kearney.
SPVA meet
    Last Thursday’s SPVA meet hosted by Perkins County drew runners from all seven conference schools on a windy and warm day in the 80s.
    North Platte St. Pat’s won the team title in both girls’ and boys’ divisions, with runners from St. Pat’s also taking both individual titles.

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