After earning the first individual sectional title for the DeForest boys cross country team in 20 years, John Roth took his talents to the WIAA Division 1 state meet at the Ridges Golf Course in Wisconsin Rapids last Saturday.
Roth, a senior, finished off his career with a 43rd-place finish at state.
Roth finished the course in a time of 16 minutes, 37.9 seconds. He was in 15th place after the first mile, but then ran into some trouble.
“John executed the plan we put together to perfection,” DeForest coach Joe Parker said. “He was out at the first mile in just under 5 minutes and started moving up in the race to put himself in a spot to move in the last mile. Unfortunately, he got tripped up at about the 700-meter mark and went down. I think the adrenaline of that caught up to him by the two-mile mark and when he wanted to make his move, his legs locked up on him. No one was more disappointed than John, but I am hopeful that the body of work that made up his season will give him enough to reflect positively in the future.”
Hortonville senior Jake Krause (15:34.2) came away with the Division 1 individual boys title, while Slinger’s Cael Grotenhuis (15:42.5) and Hamilton’s Gavin Kuhlenbeck (15:43.9) were second and third, respectively.
Middleton claimed in team title in Division 1 with 104 points, followed in the top five by Stevens Point (116), Hortonville (179), Madison West (182) and Oconomowoc (183).
Muskego claimed the Division 1 girls title with 72 team points, followed in the top five by Onalaska (111), Sun Prairie (134), Middleton (147) and Arrowhead (218).
Onalaska’s Kora Malecek (17:44.6) claimed the individual girls crown, while Middleton’s Lauren Pansegrau (18:14.2) and Stevens Point’s Roisin Willis (18:20.9) were second and third, respectively.
Also capturing team titles on Saturday were Shorewood (Division 2 girls), Lourdes Academy (Division 3 girls), Valders (Division 2 boys) and Aquinas (Division 3 boys).
Roth’s run at state marked the end of the season for the Norskies. Parker was pleased how things went.
“The team certainly improved more than some would have expected,” Parker said. “When we lost two state qualifiers, we had some holes to fill. Our guys did a nice job working hard in the summer months to help fill those holes. Having the majority of guys run lifetime best-times at conference or sectionals was a nice ending to the year.”