Two cross country runners are all-state medalists


Sophomore Dallas Larsen, coach Ehren Banfield, and junior Ashlee Kuykendall celebrate after the state cross country meet in Jefferson City. Kuykendall placed 22nd and Larsen placed 25th. Photo submitted.


  Two cross country runners are All-State medalists. Junior Ashlee Kuykendall and sophomore Dallas Larsen both placed in the top 25 at the state cross country meet in Jefferson City on November 7th.

   Larson placed 25th out of 163 boys, and Kuykendall placed 22nd out of the 161 girls participating. They both worked very hard to get to state this year.

  For the cross country runners it was a long season, but according to Larsen and Kuykendall it was worth it to become All-State medalists.

  “I was so shocked and excited when I realized I had placed at state,” Larsen said.

  The two qualified for state after placing in the district run on Oct. 31 in Hermitage. Kuykendall placed 2nd and Larsen placed 3rd. The girls’ team placed fourth at the district run.

  “They organized their own weights program over the summer, and the off-season training they did is how Ashlee improved so much this season and was able to go to state,” said Cross Country Coach Ehren Banfield.

  This not only pleased the runners, but also their coach.

  “When I got the results of the race and I saw Dallas in the top 25, I was so proud and excited to show him. I am so proud that I was able to take these two runners to state.,” Banfield said

  Even though it’s the end of the season, it isn’t the end of their running careers.

  “Of course I plan to go to state again in the future,” Larsen said.

  During the off-season, most of the runners will play different sports like wrestling and basketball to stay in shape, and then they will start training again during the summer.

   According to Coach Banfield, this was a very good season over all for the cross country runners and he hopes the next year will be just as great.