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Batchelor wins race, Clark-Willow Lake girls team title at Border Battle

Milbank’s Ashlynn Batchelor leads the field during the 1600 meter run at the Northeast Conference track and field meet last spring in Groton. Batchelor won the girls' race at the Border Battle in Grand Forks, N.D., on Saturday. Photo by John Davis taken 5/13/2021

GRAND FORKS, N.D. – Clark-Willow Lake won the Class A girls’ team championship and Milbank Area’s Ashlynn Batchleor won the Class A girls’ individual crown during the Border Battle Cross County Meet on Saturday.

CWL scored 85 points to win the girls’ division with Milbank in third place.

Batchelor won the individual title with a time of 18:59.20, while Kamryn Nesheim of Clark-Willow Lake finished runner-up with a time of 19:49.90. Warner’s Kennadee Wagner finished fourth (20:05.30).

Addison Cassady led Aberdeen Roncalli with a 23rd place finish (21:15.00), while Sarah Schmidt and Paige Schmidt finished 47th and 57th, respectively.

Roncalli coach Brady Lesnar was pleased with how his runners performed.

“Our girls’ varsity I thought ran fairly well,” Lesnar said. “I thought Addison Cassady did a good job. She was 23 out of 81 athletes, and Paige and Sarah Schmidt weren’t too far behind. That was good for them with all the competition they had, to be in the top one-third of a big meet like that.”

On the boys’ side Tri-State’s Kaleb Foltz earned an eighth-place finish in the Class A race.

The Cavaliers were led by Paul Gutenkauf, who placed 65th. Lesnar was glad to see Gutenkauf run a solid race.

Aberdeen Roncalli’s Paul Gutenkauf runs for the finish line at the Roncalli Cross Country Invite earlier this season at Lee Park Golf Course. Photo by John Davis taken 9/14/2023

“It got pretty hot and humid there, but he did alright,” Lesnar said.

Matthew Peterson (83rd), Isaac Price (104th), Ben Bradley (132nd), and Beau Price (192nd) also competed for Roncalli.

“I thought we had a good day. It was a beautiful morning. It was nice and cool out when our seventh and eighth-graders started off the meet,” Lesnar said.

Lesnar said there were different aspects to the meet that are not always seen at other cross country meets.

“You get a lot of kids that are featured,” Lesnar said. “The seventh-grade division there was like 100 girls and same with the eighth-grade division; 100 girls and boys in each of their races. They do a top 20. They get them on a stage, even in the seventh-grade division, so that was really cool to see for the kids.”

Roncalli will now gear up for the Northeast Conference meet on Thursday in Webster, and Lesnar is looking for his team to battle.

“Just looking for us to be competitive, because just about all the teams we see at the NEC we’re going see again at the region,” Lesnar said, “and all those teams are teams we’ve got to battle against to get our spots in so that we can get to the state meet.”

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