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Cross Country: “This is the team we’ve envisioned,” Osakis coach says after Sauk Centre meet

Lauren Savageau finished the Sauk Centre meet in sixth place overall. (Emily Myrin / Echo Press)1 / 5
Carter Grove led the Osakis boys by placing 10th in the boys varsity race in Sauk Centre. (Emily Myirn / Echo Press)2 / 5
Freshman Grace Oeltjen finished 10th in the Silverstreaks' meet in Sauk Centre. (Emily Myrin / Echo Press)3 / 5
Will Alverson finishes the race in Sauk Centre in Tuesday night. (Emily Myrin / Echo Press)4 / 5
The Osakis girls cross country team prepares to race in Sauk Centre. (Emily Myrin / Echo Press)5 / 5

The Osakis cross country teams contended with a brand new course and came out with a third place score for the girls and a fifth place score for the boys on Tuesday evening in Sauk Centre at the Sauk Centre Country Club.

“I thought we had a great race,” Silverstreaks coach Justin Dahlheimer said. “We ran pretty full teams. I was impressed with the depth we had all the way through the varsity race.”

The boys had the highest finish they’ve ever had, which looks good for the final meets of the season, Dahlheimer said.

“The girls had a really nice finish,” Dahlheimer said. “We were down probably a scoring runner. It’s good to see the girls take third without somebody who might improve their score coming into the last few meets here.”

The Streaks’ girls varsity team placed three runners in the top 20 earning a third place spot overall with 113 points. Melrose followed in fourth place with 114 points. Staples Motley came in second with 91 points and Sauk Centre took the meet with 67 points.

Senior Lauren Savageau came in first for the Streaks, placing sixth overall with a time of 21:17.1.

“It was a new course so none of us knew what to expect,” Savageau said. “I think overall as a team and individually we ran better here. Third place was pretty good for us.”

Freshman Grace Oeltjen was second for the Silverstreaks in 10th place in 21:48.2. Rachel Walsh was third in 20th place in 22:47, followed by freshman Destiny Dorman in 26th place in 23.08.5. Natalie Schlosser came in 51st in 24:56.2. Hailey Hagedon was 55th in 25:09.8 and eighth grader Kerstin Moberg was 57th in 25:14.4

“This is a different course than last year,” Dahlheimer said. “I think it’s a little challenging because people assume that because there are no hills it’s going to be fast but there are a lot of straight aways which tend to wear on runners. But I did see a lot of things that I liked.”

The Osakis boys came in fifth with 173 points.

“I think the guys are doing really good,” junior William Alverson said. “We placed fifth overall out of a lot of teams. I think that’s really good for us because we’re really small so we’re starting to build.”

Carter Grove led them, finishing 10th overall in 18:03. Alverson was second for the Silverstreaks in 27th place with a time of 18:43.2. Brandon Boogaard came in third in 29th place in 19:40.3. Freshman Brentley Boogaard followed closely behind in 43rd place in 19:52.6. Freshman Logan Grove came in 54th in 20:26.2 followed by senior Shane Massmann in 58th in 20:39.5 and Dylan Klukken was 59th in 20:44.8.

“Our hope for a lot of our guys is to break 20 minutes -- at least our top seven. That’s one of our big goals,” Alverson said.

For a program that is still relatively young, Dahlheimer is seeing the kind of growth he wants to see from his athletes.

“These kids really matured together,” Dalheimer said. “The team started four years ago and the kids now that are seniors, juniors and sophomores were the core of my team. It’s really fun to see them emerge into the varsity competition now finally on equal footing with some other programs. Now we can see the hard work that they’ve put in.”

Savageau has been one of those athletes leading the way up front for the girls team, and she’s hoping this team takes another step forward with bigger meets right around the corner.

“I think maybe top three for conference would be a good goal for us,” Savageau said.

The Silverstreaks race again on Tuesday, Oct 10 at 4:15 at in Royalton. The Central Minnesota Conference meet is then set for Oct. 17 in Kimball before sections at Long Prairie on Oct. 26.

“This is the team we’ve envisioned for both squads,” Dalheimer said. “I’m looking forward to seeing them continue to get better because they’ve been doing very well.”