Boys cross country: Hall sets pace at twi-light

Gazette photo by Stuart Groskreutz
Led by three-time winner Wayde Hall, front, freshman Eli Krahn, left, and senior Sean Bjork, right, finished second and third for the No. 1-ranked Stillwater boys’ cross country team at Thursday’s twi-light meet at Stillwater Junior High School.

Wayde Hall ran the fastest time in the 20-year history of the Stillwater boys’ cross country team’s annual twi-light meet on Thursday at Miller Stadium — becoming the only three-time winner of this race in the process.

Hall, who is ranked No. 1 in the preseason state coaches poll, completed the 5,000-meter race in a time of 15:26 to better the times posted by former Ponies and subsequent sub 4-minute milers Luke Watson (15:30), Jake Watson (15:31) and Ben Blankenship (15:33).

“He looked good,” Ponies coach Scott Christensen said. “He justified his ranking and he’s looked that good every day at practice.”

Another highlight on Thursday was freshman Eli Krahn placing second with a time of 15:53 while senior Sean Bjork moved up to third with a time of 16:07.

“Eli Krahn is validating what everybody thinks of him and Sean has worked real hard to move up from a miler to a distance runner,” Christensen said.

The coach said Eric Colvin went out a little too fast and he followed in fourth place at 16:15 while Tayler Aarness finished fifth in a time of 16:34.

The other top eight who earned a spot in the varsity lineup for the season-opening Marshfield Columbus Invite were Matt Thomas (16:53), Bailey Hesse-Withroe (16:56) and Edoardo Tagliaferri (17:05).

“One-two-three looked real good and then we dropped off,” Christensen said.