Girls Cross Country Caps: A Quick Look All Six Area Teams

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Photo by Jeff Yoder

Ryan Murken

Your Prep Sports

West High

Head coach: Mike Parker (22nd season)

Assistant coach: Peggy McGuire

Last season: Fifth at Class 4A State Meet

Returners: Deniz Ince, Sr.; Kiara Malloy-Salgado, Soph.; Erica Buettner, Soph.; Katie Hoeffer, Soph.; Maddy Negley, Soph.

Newcomers to watch: Lucy Westemeyer, Soph.; Anna Moore, Soph.; Mattie Harms, Fr.; Camden Zirker, Fr.

Conference meet: October 4: Mississippi Valley Conference Meet at Noelridge Park in Cedar Rapids. October 11: MVC Valley Divisional Meet at Noelridge Park in Cedar Rapids.

Headliner: Deniz Ince proved on the track last spring she is among the elite distance runners in the state. The senior will now attempt to translate that success to cross country while improving on a 47th place finish at state last season.

Keep an eye on: Sophomore Kiara Malloy-Salgado capped an impressive freshman season with a 29th place finish at the 4A state meet.

Noteworthy: West High has won Mississippi Valley Conference titles 18 of the past 22 seasons and claimed state qualifying meet titles 17 times in the last 21 years.

City High

Head coach: Ryan and Lynn Ahlers (2nd season)

Assistant coach: Jessica Hodge, Christina Welu-Reynolds, Madison Waymire

Last season: 11th at Class 4A State Meet

Returners: Anna Lindower, Sr.; Aly Hecker, Sr.; Annalise Rummelhart, Sr.; Naomi Meurice, Sr.; Esti Brady, Jr.; Julia Veit, Jr.; Paige Rocca, Jr.; Janie Perrill, Soph.; Lilly Reynolds, Soph.; Jordan Sekafetz, Soph.; Jae Dancer, Soph.

Newcomers to watch: Caroline Schaeckenbach, Jr.; CeCe Kelly-Harvey, Soph.; Rowan Boulter, Fr.; Tatum Frazier, Fr.; Lucy Corbin, Fr.

Conference meet: October 4: Mississippi Valley Conference Meet at Noelridge Park in Cedar Rapids. October 11: MVC Mississippi Divisional Meet in Dubuque.

Headliner: Senior Anna Lindower is seeking to become a four-time state qualifier this season after placing 91st last season.

Keep an eye on: Junior Estie Brady is a two-time state qualifier and had her best performance at the state meet last season placing 46th in 19:48.2.

Noteworthy: City High extended its streak of consecutive state meet appearances to an even 30 last year, finishing 11th at the Class 4A meet.

Liberty High

Head coach: Tonya McDonough (2nd season)

Assistant coach: Barb Lynn

Returners: Camille Mac, Soph.; McKenzie Logan, Soph.

Newcomers to watch: Ashlyn Keeney, Fr.; Isabelle Woody, Fr.; Beth Jaeger, Fr.; Chaise Lange, Soph.; Christella Luyeye, Soph.

Conference meet: October 4: Mississippi Valley Conference Meet at Noelridge Park in Cedar Rapids. October 11: MVC Valley Divisional Meet at Noelridge Park in Cedar Rapids.

Headliner: Sophomore Camille Mac made history last season as the first medalist in program history placing 13th at the Class 3A state meet in a time of 19:16.2.

Keep an eye on: Freshman Ashlyn Keeney was expected to make an immediate impact and showed her potential by winning her first varsity meet at the West High Early Bird Invite last week.

Noteworthy: After making its debut as a varsity team last season Liberty High will compete in the Mississippi Valley Conference postseason meets for the first time this fall.

Clear Creek Amana

Head coach: Jane Astor

Last season: 10th at WAMAC Conference Meet

Returners: Kaylie Barker, Sr.; Madeline Fox, Soph.; Kayla Jiras, Soph.

Newcomers to watch: Allie Kounkel, Fr.

Conference meet: October 11: WAMAC Meet at South Tama

Headliner: A two-time state qualifier senior Kaylie Barker will look to cap her prep career with a strong showing after placing 60th at the state meet two seasons ago as a sophomore.

Keep an eye on: Madeline Fox was a letterwinner last season as a freshman and caught the attention of Astor with a strong offseason.  

Noteworthy: Astor is excited to watch the progress of freshman Allie Kounkel.

Solon

Head coach: Emy Williams (17th Season) 

Assistant coach: Michelle Lyons

Last season: Third at WAMAC Conference Meet

Returners: Saige Hauer, Sr.; Erin Kerkhoff, Sr.; Calista Haasl, Sr.; Ella Duster, Jr.; Nicole Shafer, Jr.; Kiersten Conway, Soph.

Conference meet: October 11: WAMAC Meet at South Tama

Headliner: Sophomore Kiersten Conway had a strong debut season a year ago placing 22nd at the Class 3A meet in 19:33.9.

Keep an eye on: Junior Nicole Shafer was the top performer for the Spartans in their last trip to state placing 79th as a freshman in 2016.  

Noteworthy: Solon is seeking a return trip to the state meet for the second time in three seasons after missing out last year.

Regina

Head coach: Liam Hartley (1st season)

Last season: Seventh at Class 2A State Meet

Returners: Bree Balke, Sr.; Mary Graff, Sr.; Molly Vittetoe, Sr.; Lauren Kimani, Sr.; Alisa Pursley, Sr.; Emma Welter, Jr.; Kennedy Scott, Jr.

Newcomers to watch: Annalee Bartels, Soph.; Maeve Dunne, Sr.; Josie Pursley, Fr.; Josie Voss, Fr.

Conference meet: October 11: River Valley Conference Meet at Kickers Soccer Complex in Iowa City

Headliner: Junior Kennedy Scott is a two-time state qualifier coming off a career-best 23rd place finish at the 2A meet last season.

Keep an eye on: Senior Molly Vittetoe capped a strong junior season with a 39th place finish at the state meet and will look to take another step forward this fall.  

Noteworthy: Regina graduate Liam Hartley takes over a Regal program that returns its top two runners, and four of its top seven from a squad moves down to 1A after placing seventh at the 2A state meet a year ago.