LAWRENCE – Great Bend’s top runners Karen Razo and Kerby Depenbusch improved their times and met their goal of top five finishes at the Class 5A state cross country championship at Rim Rock Farm in Lawrence. Razo was fourth medalist (19:55.0) and Kerby Depenbusch was fifth medalist (16:10.3) with temperatures approaching 80 degrees Saturday.
Razo improved her time by 17.8 seconds from an earlier meet at Rim Rock. She beat three top 10 finishers from last year. Razo placed 35th and 52nd the past two years at Class 5A state.
“Karen ran one of her best races and beat some awfully good runners,” said Great Bend coach Lyles Lashley. “She ran with the leaders for a mile and a half. She was close to the third-place finisher from Mill Valley.”
Depenbusch improved his time by 24 seconds from an earlier meet at Rim Rock. Will Cole of St. Thomas Aquinas was the medalist (15:49.8) and Alex Gill of Aquinas was second (15:52.6). Depenbusch was close behind Salina South’s Josh Reed, Andover’s Alex Moen. The top five runners beat the Class 6A winner. Depenbusch placed seventh and 21st the past two years at Class 5A state.
”Kerby has happy that he ran a really good race,” Lashley said. “We wanted to stay with the leaders and he did that, but those Aquinas runners are good runners and eventually had a gap on the field. Kerby and Moen closed hard on the Salina South runner.”
Great Bend senior Eric Vazquez was 11th medalist (16:37.9) in Class 5A. Great Bend finished seventh in the boys division (175). Vazquez (19 seconds), Connor Griffith (20 seconds), Ryan Nicholson (20 seconds), Sage Cauley (8 seconds), Ray Kuhlman (18) seconds and Justin Owen (1:34) all improved their times from Rim Rock. The Panthers ran five freshmen.
“They all ran Rim Rock better than did the first time,” Lashley said. “The freshmen reacted well to the environment at the state meet. We’re excited they gained state experience.”
Great Bend finished seventh in the boys division (175). St. Thomas Aquinas (38) defended its state title and Mill Valley (103) placed second.
St. Thomas Aquinas girls won the state title (40) and Lenexa-St. James placed second (54).
CLASS 5A BOYS TEAM TOTALS—1—St. Thomas Aquinas 38, 2--Mill Valley 103, 3--Andover 114, 4--Topeka Seaman 142, 5--Bishop Carroll 155, 6--BV Southwest 155, 7--Great Bend 175, 8--Leavenworth 178, 9--Newton 191, 10--Maize 216, 11--Salina South 232, 12--Lansing 316.
TOP 20 MEDALISTS—1—Will Cole, Aquinas, 15:49.8; 2—Alex Gill, Aquinas, 15:52.6; 3—Joshua Reed, Salina South, 16:06.9; 4—Alex Moen, Andover, 16:09.1; 5—Kerby Depenbusch, Great Bend, 16:10.3; 6—Dylan Miller, BV South, 16:29.3; 7—Dawson Podlena, Seaman, 16:29.4; 8—Andrew Lebourveau, Aquinas, 16:31.9; 9—Jacob Cofer, Aquinas, 16:34.0; 10—Matt Harding, Carroll, 16:37.2
11—Eric Vazquez, Great Bend, 16:37.9; 12—Tyler Coad, MV, 16:42.5; 13—Daniel Bohneman, Leavenworth, 16:44.9; 14—Hunter Henderson, Shawnee Hts. 16:48.2; 15—Nathan Jones, Maize, 16:48.6; 16—Garrett Mick, Newton, 16:58.1; 17—Greg Haynes, MV, 16:57.9; 18—Asher Moen, Andover, 16:58.0; 19—David McCanna, Aquinas, 17:00.7; 20—Keetan Munsell, Salina South, 17:02.6
GREAT BEND STATE RESULTS—5—Kerby Depenbusch, 16:10.3; 11—Eric Vazquez, 16:37.9; 40—Connor Griffith, 17:25.8; 71—Ryan Nicholson, 18:06.3; 81—Sage Cauley, 18:12.5; 100—Ray Kuhlman, 19:35.3; 103—Justin Owen, 20:34.3
5A GIRLS GIRLS TEAM TOTALS—1—St. Thomas Aquinas 40, 2—St. James Academy 54, 3—Mill Valley 113, 4—Wichita Carroll 123, 5—Lansing 139, 6—Liberal 153, 7—Valley Center 156, 8—Leavenworth 228, 9—Salina Central 231, 10—Andover 250, 11—Salina South 258, 12—Topeka Seaman 318.
TOP 20 MEDALISTS—1—Olivia Sovereign, Aquinas, 19:28.7; 2—Margaret Pigott, Aquinas, 19:39.1; 3—Britton Nelson, Mill Valley, 19:51.0; 4—Karen Razo, Great Bend, 19:55.0; 5—Carlie Yunger, St. James, 19:56.4; 6—Camryn Slatten, Liberal, 19:57.6; 7—Katie Horyna, Liberal, 20:05.0; 8—Morgan Dierks, KC Sumner, 20:06.4; 9—Jaci Huckabee, Lansing, 20:09.1; 10—Abigail Stewart, Emporia, 20:10.0
11—Sarah Murrow, St. James, 20:15.9; 12—Katherine Moore, St. James, 20:16.1; 13—Allison Strathman, Aquinas, 20:21.2; 14—Kadyn Cobb, Salina Central, 20:30.5; 15—Alaina Stucky, Newton, 20:34.4; 16—Emma Bresser, Lansing, 20:43.0; 17—Madison Fritz, BVSW, 20:45.2; 19—Blythe Pearson, Aquinas, 20:52.0; 20—Jadyn Eddy, Valley Center, 20:53.5