JESUP — Jackie Kokjohn has gotten familiar with the state cross country course in Fort Dodge the past three years. She’ll try to make her fourth trip there her best a week from Saturday.
Kokjohn, a senior at Prince of Peace, earned a berth in the Class 1A girls meet with a fifth-place finish in Thursday’s state-qualifying meet. She ran the 4,000-meter course at Jesup Golf Course in 15 minutes, 40 seconds. The top 10 finishers qualified individually, and that group also included Calamus-Wheatland’s Megan Slattery (10th in 15:53).
“She ran well,” first-year Irish coach Owen Howard said of Kokjohn. “She pretty much ran her usual race. She went out at a decent pace and the first mile was ninth. The next mile she usually picks it up, and she got ahead of a pack and settled into the fifth spot.
“We knew going in that the girl from North Linn would be up there, and if she could stick with her to go out and run her race.”
Abi Watson of North Tama was the individual champion in 15:17, and runner-up Nicole Miller of North Linn was second in 15:30. Elkader Central won the team title with 70 points and advanced, as did South Winneshiek (94) and North Linn (108).
Meghan McLaughlin led Easton Valley with an 18th-place finish in 16:41, while Molly Sieverding was Marquette’s top runner, taking 40th in 17:26.
The Prince of Peace boys finished eighth in their race with 264 points. Bellevue captured the third spot to advance to state, while Marquette Catholic took seventh. Denver was the team champion, with South Winneshiek second.
Bellevue’s Andrew Meyer (16:19) placed second individually behind Denver’s Kyle Kehoe (16:10). Marquette’s Lucas Schmidt earned a trip to the state meet with an eighth-place finish in 17:18.
Devin Bly led Prince of Peace with a 32nd-place finish in 18:26.