By Jon Gremmels
Herald Sports Editor
FORT DODGE —
It was as if time stood still for Clinton High’s Emmanuel Marcos-Teles and Jackie Kokjohn of Prince of Peace.
Both runners were happy as they placed the same as they did the previous year at the Iowa High School Cross Country Championships on Saturday at Kennedy Park.
“It’s pretty nice,” Marcos-Teles, a senior, said after he finished 14th in the Class 4A boys race.
“I’m happy; it was a good time,” Kokjohn, a junior, said after claiming 26th place for the second year in a row in the 1A girls competition.
Marcos-Teles finished in 15 minutes, 47 seconds, 18 seconds slower than his 2011 time. Jason Thomas of team champion West Des Moines Dowling Catholic won the 5,000-meter race in 15:02. The two runners who finished ahead of Marcos-Teles in the state-qualifying meet — Dylan Eigenberger of Dubuque Senior and Caleb Drake of Pleasant — both crossed the finish line in 15:07, with Eigenberger pulling ahead on a late surge. The top three runners all broke the 4A course-record time.
“This course is pretty fast,” Marcos-Teles said. “You don’t want to stay too behind. My plan was to stay in the front pack and find a good spot. My first mile was pretty good, but I didn’t feel very fast in the second mile. I felt pretty good the last mile.”
Kokjohn employed a strategy that has worked well for her recently. She tried to stay close to Sarah Lampe of Marquette Catholic throughout the race. When Lampe won the Big East Conference title, Kokjohn placed third, then Lampe and Kokjohn took fifth and sixth, respectively, at the regional.
“I try keeping her in my sight and run with her,” said Kokjohn, whose time (15:45) for 4,000 meters was 3 seconds slower than she ran in 2011. “It was perfect weather, my favorite type: sunny, not a lot of wind.
This year’s race was a bit different for Kokjohn. The Irish had qualified as a team her previous two years, but this time she was the lone Prince of Peace runner.
“It’s different not running with the team, but all the boys and girls helped motivate me and kept practicing,” she said.
Marquette was one of the 15 teams that competed, and Lampe wound up in 22nd place in 15:35 and to lead the Mohawks to a seventh-place finish in the 1A team standings. She was 12th in the team scoring — for team points, the placings for individual entrants, such as Kokjohn, are not included.
Theresa Koos (15:53) finished 30th for the Mohawks, while Kather-ine Herrig was 47th in 16:16, Molly Sieverding was 80th in 17:10 and Anne Nolting placed 88th in 17:26.
Marquette’s boys team placed ninth with 210 points, led by a 17th-place finish from Dan Schroeder 17:05). The Mohawks’ other scorers were Lucas Schmidt (37th in 17:26), Kody Kilburg (79th in 18:14), Karter Kilburg (82nd in 18:15) and Paul McClimon (98th in 18:41).
Bellevue High freshman Andrew Meyer earned a top-10 finish in 1A. He placed ninth overall in 16:45. Josh Sindelar of team champion Council Bluffs St. Albert was the 1A individual winner in 16:15.
Northeast junior Eli Kaczinski improved 10 spots in this year’s Class 2A boys race, finishing 23rd in 16:49, but he was far from pleased.
“This definitely wasn’t my best race,” he said. “I knew I had to get out fast. The 2A runners are so fast, so I give credit to them.
“This makes me definitely want to work harder and get stronger.”
Will Norris of Spirit Lake won the 2A individual title in 15:25, while Monticello was the team champion with 52 points.
Other team champions were Pleasant Valley (4A girls), Decorah (3A girls and boys) and Griswold in the 1A girls.
Claiming the other individual girls titles were Marion Linn-Mar freshman Stephanie Jenks (13:42), the fourth-best time in 4A history; Waverly -Shell Rock senior Anna Holdiman, the 2009 champion, in 13:51 in 3A; senior Cassandra Stuflick of Danville-New London (14:54) in 2A; and sophomore Rebekah Topham of Griswold, who won her second crown in 14:05 in 1A. Chandler Austin of Boone won the 3A boys race in 15:24.