Three runners on the Newton cross country teams earned top-20 finishes at the 44th Annual Steve McDermott Cardinal Cross Country Invitational on Tuesday.
The meet was a mini preview of what the Little Hawkeye Conference meet could look like as five schools from the league were in action at Westwood Golf Course.
The top Newton finisher was Jackson Mace-Maynard, who finished 12th in the boys’ 5K race.
Ashay Malow was 17th in the girls’ 5K race, while Treycen Garton came in 17th in the boys’ race.
The top 10 finishers in each varsity race earned medals.
“I’m proud of how they ran with those huge hills and still improved from Osky,” Newton boys’ head coach Steve Weeks said. “Times may not be what we want, but we’re not training for peak results in the middle of the season. We’re looking for excellent conference and district results.”
The Class 4A No. 9 Norwalk boys put its five scoring runners in the top 10 and scored 29 points to win the team title. Class 3A No. 1 Dallas Center-Grimes (49) was second and second-ranked Pella (64) finished third.
DCG was without one of its ranked runners. Oskaloosa (112), Newton (132) and Knoxville (139) completed the field.
Class 4A No. 15 Norwalk scored 26 points to win the girls’ team race. Pella (51) was second, Grinnell (94) came in third and Oskaloosa (104), Knoxville (116) and Newton (132) rounded out the field.
“The team ran very well tonight,” Newton head girls coach Rachelle Tipton said. “It was nice to see them push through the toughest part of the course. Their times reflected the effort.”
Mace-Maynard’s 12th-place time was clocked at 17 minutes, 57.6 seconds. Class 3A No. 3 Aidan Ramsey of DCG won the race in 16:17.4.
Garton (18:13.3) finished 17th for the Cardinals. Brennan Amos (20:16) came in 31st, Leo Friedman (21:22) took 35th and Ryan Nook (21:26.4) was the final counting scorer in 37th.
Landon Menninga (21:29) ended up 38th and Anthony Bestell (21:40) finished 40th.
Four Cardinals who ran in the junior varsity boys’ race completed times comparable to the varsity runners. Derek Beiner finished in 19:48, Jared Smith was clocked at 21:04 and Collin Buchli ended his race in 21:07. Hunter Kennedy had a time of 21:31.
“Jackson and Treycen led the pack, which is where we assumed they would be given all the training they have done in the off season,” Weeks said. “We saw a huge improvement this year in Derek Beiner, who is battling to be the No. 3 runner on varsity.”
Malow’s 17th-place time for the Newton girls was clocked at 23:47. Kelsey Church finished 22nd with a time of 24:18 and Kate Muckler (25:23) was 26th.
The final two scoring runners were Morgan Stalzer (26:12) in 31st and Desirae Gifford (27:06) in 36th.
The final two varsity runners were Willow Oswalt (27:23) in 38th and Taylor Maki (29:17) in 41st.
“Kate looked good tonight,” Tipton said. “She found herself alone in the middle of the race with a pack trying to gain on her, but she not only held them off but pulled away more.
Norwalk’s Breelie Mauro won the girls’ 5K race in 20:23. Ninth-ranked Norah Pearson of Knoxville was second in 20:30.
The Cardinals next compete at 4:30 p.m. on Oct. 5 in Norwalk.