Luke wins Class B boys’ title; Abby takes second in girls’ race
HUXLEY – The Kohut-Jackson siblings each had a great day to help the Ballard cross country teams both place third in Class B at the Ballard Invitational Monday at the Ballard Golf and Country Club in Huxley.
Luke Kohut-Jackson won the Class B individual championship in the boys’ race and his younger sister Abby took second in the girls’ race for Ballard.
In the boys’ competition, Luke ran a five-kilometer time of 16 minutes, 47 seconds to edge Saydel’s Casey Roberts by four seconds for first among Class B competitors in the Classes A and B race. Boone’s Albert Meier and Chandler Austin were first and second in Class A with respective times of 15:21 and 15:31.
“It was nice because it wasn’t too warm like last Tuesday,” Luke said. “I was figuring definitely top 10. I was trying to stay up with Albert and Chandler, but they took off. Then it was OK; let’s run with the people who are next to you and they helped move me along. So I ran a good time.”
Luke has been the anchor for a young Ballard boys’ team in a rebuilding phase. But other runners also stepped up for the Bombers Monday as Craig Jordan came in ninth and Kyle Schilling placed 20th.
“This year, if we all put in enough work, I feel we can make it to state,” Luke said. “If all of us work really well together and run as a pack more than individually. Jordan is coming along and trying to stick with me more in practice and that really helps.”
Craig’s time on Monday was 17:56. Schilling clocked in at 18:39.
Jed Miller and Kaleb Wohlgemuth completed the scoring for Ballard by placing 34th and 36th respectively with times of 19:16 and 19:24.
Caleb Wuestenberg and Bryce Snell were close behind the scoring group after running times of 19:24 and 19:25 to place 38th and 39th.
In the girls’ Class B race Ballard scored 94 points to beat Creston by 15 points for third. Gilbert easily won with 32 points and Humboldt was second with a score of 54.
Abby turned in a great individual performance with a 4-kilometer time of 15:10. That time was good enough to beat Humboldt’s Sam Larson by 37 seconds for second in Class B, behind only the phenomenal time of 14:49 by Gilbert’s Grace Gibbons.
Abby’s time was good enough to outclass every runner from the other three classes to make her the second-fastest runner overall on the course.
“It felt like it was definitely one of my better races,” Abby said. “Earlier in the year it was really hot, so I knew the weather was going to be a plus today, but I still had to focus and keep going. I didn’t wear my watch today so I didn’t know exactly where I was except for the mile times. But I was watching the girls and kind of knew some of them and where they’d be so I tried to gauge off of them.”
Abby’s instincts paid off because during the first loop for the girls a large pack at the front missed a turn.
“They started to go past the turn, but I know (Dallas Center-Grimes’) Madison Waymire saw it and I realized it so we turned off,” Abby said. “We walked the course before and the lines are painted, but I guess it was kind of a hidden turn that they didn’t see, so those that knew the course were a little confused. I thought that was the turn, but I wasn’t positive so I kind of slowed a little bit and realized my mistake and kept going. I know it did cost some other people some time, so that was kind of sad.”
Val Charter turned in the second-fastest Bomber time as she placed in the top 20 with an 18th-place showing of 17:17. Ashley Meldrum and Sara Hugee were 23rd and 24th with respective times of 17:53 and 17:59 and Rachel Watters took 27th as the final scored Bomber runner after crossing the finish line in 18:05.
Final team scores
Girls: 1. Gilbert 32, 2. Humboldt 54, 3. Ballard 94, 4. Creston 109, 5. Nevada 129, 6. ADM 152, 7. Bondurant-Farrar, 181, 8. Saydel 194.
Boys: 1. Creston 74, 2. Nevada 93, 3. Ballard 100, 4. Humboldt 107, 5. Saydel 113, 6. Gilbert 118, 7. ADM 133, 8. Bondurant-Farrar 181, 9. Clarke 248, 10. Madrid 286.
Individual results – Ballard
Girls (4-kilometer): 2. Abby Kohut-Jackson, 15:10; 18. Van Charter, 17:17; 23. Ashley Meldrum, 17:53; 24. Sara Hugee, 17:59; 27. Rachel Watters, 18:05; 37. Meghan Hirsch, 18:26; 42. Shelby Petersen, 19:08.
Boys (5-kilometer): 1. Luke Kohut-Jackson, 16:47; 9. Craig Jordan, 17:56; 20. Kyle Schilling, 18:39; 34. Jed Miller, 19:16; 36. Kaleb Wohlgemuth, 19:24; 38. Caleb Wuestenberg, 19:24; 39. Bryce Snell, 19:25.