By PATRICK SLACK
If Holdingford junior Andrew Zachman wasn’t already among Minnesota’s elite heading into the state cross country meet, he is now.
Zachman, who took 78th in Class A a year ago, took a massive leap forward in what has been a breakout season, capturing all-state honors with an eighth-place time of 16:20.7 in this year’s state competition at St. Olaf College in Northfield, Saturday.
Zachman’s previous personal best entering the meet was 16:36. The top 25 finishers are recognized as all-state.
“Andrew had the best race of his life up to this point,” Holdingford head coach Mark Alcorn said. “I was surprised that he finished eighth. Saturday’s course is fairly challenging, but fair.”
Junior teammate Abe Skwira also made a major climb in the standings in his second trip to state, taking 28th place in 16:59.8 after finishing 58th a season ago.
Holdingford girls take 13th running in third state meet
Back at the state meet for the third season in a row, the Holdingford girls brought home 13th place in the Class A girls race.
Junior Emily Wolter led the Huskers, placing 63rd overall in 16:02.4, joined in the top 100 by senior Abby Mokhtary in 16:13.3.
Freshman Jo Merten (16:22.8) and sophomores Rachael Preusser (16:45.9) and Sunni Ebnet (17:02.4) also scored for Holdingford, with sophomore Alli Ruprecht (17:05.5) and freshman Angel Rick (17:15.1) rounding out the lineup.
“I was proud of the girls,” Alcorn said. “Six of the seven arguably had their best races of the year. The state meet is the time to do that.”
The Holdingford girls also captured this year’s Central Minnesota Conference championship.
Mokhtary was the lone senior for this year’s Huskers girls.