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WCHS hosts Lynx Invite today at Briggs Woods

SH in the field as well, racing gets started at 5 p.m.

WEBSTER CITY — The training has been extensive, and now it’s time to see if it was all worth it.

Runners from all across central Iowa will convene at Briggs Woods Golf Course this afternoon for what will be the first cross country competition of the season for most. The Lynx Invite will get started with the girls junior varsity race at 5 p.m., followed by the varsity girls at 5:35 p.m., the varsity boys at 6:10 p.m., and the junior varsity boys at 6:45 p.m.

There will be no fee for parking and spectators will not be required to wear masks. However, they are strongly recommended.

Teams expected to join WCHS include South Hamilton, Algona, Belmond-Klemme, Boone, Clarion-Goldfield-Dows, Eagle Grove, Fort Dodge, Fort Dodge St. Edmond, Hampton-Dumont, Humboldt, Manson-Northwest Webster, North Polk, Roland-Story and Southeast Valley.

After a lengthy stay at The Links, the meet shifts to Briggs Woods, which will offer a tougher test with more hills for runners to battle. But WCHS head coach Derek Turner says his runners welcome the challenge. They just want to run.

“We’re anxious to have some competition besides our own teammates,” Turner, the Lynx rookie head coach, said. “They’ve been looking forward to this for weeks.

“The Links is flat and there are really no big hills to worry about. But at Briggs, there will be several hills that will be challenging. It’s probably not going to be a course where anyone will run their best time, but that’s OK.”

Meet director Tony Bussan, the former longtime coach of the WCHS program, finalized the course over the weekend. The 5K races will utilize the stretch of the golf course that includes holes 8, 9, 17 and 18. The steepest part of the course just off the tee on the first hole will not be used.

Jacob Willson, Jose Ramirez, Matt Perin, Reece Sadler, Cole Reiling, Wyatt Bingham and Sam Moberly will represent the WCHS boys in the varsity race, and they’ll face a stern test against a pair of quality Class 3A programs — No. 5-ranked North Polk and No. 8 Humboldt. The 2019 North Central Conference champion Wildcats are led by returning Lynx Invite champion Quinton Orr, who is ranked No. 2 individually. North Polk has Zach and Max Sporaa, who are ranked 10th and 13th.

WCHS has made it a season-long goal to challenge Humboldt for the conference crown, so an early-season confrontation will give Turner an early look at where things stand.

“The kids are looking forward to seeing where they stack up against other teams in our conference,” he said. “We had a time trial last week, but that’s not the same thing as running against other teams.”

Competing in the varsity race for the WCHS girls will be Jacie Crutcher, Emma Peck, Kaelyn Butz, Allison Oswald and Carly Appel.

Manson-Northwest Webster (1A No. 7) and St. Edmond (1A No. 11) are the only two ranked girls teams in the field.

AT A GLANCE

What: Lynx Invite.

Where: Briggs Woods Golf Course, Webster City.

When: Today, 5 p.m. (4 total races)

Teams: Webster City, South Hamilton, Algona, Belmond-Klemme, Boone, Clarion-Goldfield-Dows, Eagle Grove, Fort Dodge, Fort Dodge St. Edmond, Hampton-Dumont, Humboldt, Manson-Northwest Webster, North Polk, Roland-Story and Southeast Valley.

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