MHS girls cross country continuing to develop

The Minot High girls cross country team came into this season with a “young and hungry group of girls constantly striving for improvement,” according to MHS coach Carla Wahlund. Coming off of two invitational wins, Wahlund said she’s encouraged by what she’s seen.

The team is young but full of knowledgeable distance runners. Allie Wahlund and Abby Hoffarth have been the top two in the races so far and both are only sophomores.

“Both of these girls have been here since seventh grade and know what it takes,” Wahlund said.

There’s been a pack of six close runners in both of this season’s races, all of which are “very capable of taking turns on who comes out on top,” Wahlund said.

These packs help the girls keep pace throughout the races and could push them to go faster. Wahlund said there’s a lot of positive competition that goes on in these packs, but the girls just want to do well as a team. “They do a nice job running together as a pack,” she said.

After seeing their progress in the second meet, Wahlund says the girls are right where they left off.

“Practices have been encouraging, better than last year,” Wahlund said. One athlete that stood out to Wahlund was Ashley Nelson. “She put in 250 running miles and hours of cross training over the summer and her times have really dropped,” Wahlund said.

At Last week’s home meet, six of the runners hit a sub-seven minute mile pace. Wahlund left the door open for more runners to hit that mark, though.

“MaLiah Burke, she’s an eighth grader but she’s been great for the team,” Wahlund said. The cross country coach acknowledged runner Abbie Wahlund has been coming off an injury from the track season but was up with the top scorers last season and will be getting there again.

Other runners Wahlund thinks will join this squad include Lizzy Folk, Averie Hoffarth and Sara Cooper.

At 11 a.m. today, Minot faces some of the bigger schools in the state at the Mandan Golf Course.

“We are right in the mix of it compared to the east schools” Wahlund said. “We have a bunch of young runners hungry for improvement.”