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Joe Wilkinson

Solon girls 7th at state XC

Now, it’s reload for 2020!

FORT DODGE– With a brisk midday wind, and temperature struggling to hit 40 degrees, Solon’s girls capped their cross country season on a high note. Basically matching their final ranking in the polls (which ranged from 12th to sixth through the second half of the season), the Lady Spartans finished seventh of the 15 regional qualifying teams on the turf Nov. 2, for the Class 3A state meet at Kennedy Park Golf Course in Fort Dodge.

Hinman in top tier at 3a state cross country

Solon sophomore finishes 35th at Ft. Dodge

FORT DODGE– Turning on the jets with less than a half-mile to go, Solon sophomore Gabe Hinman threaded his way through the pack. He picked up some valuable real estate at the Kennedy Park Golf (and cross country) course, Saturday, finishing 35th at the Class 3A state cross country meet.
“Gabe had a great meet,” applauded head coach Emy Williams. “He ran most of the race in 43rd place. In the last 400 meters he caught a lot of runners and ended up 35th. His experience from the year before (when he finished 46th as a freshman) helped, too.

On to state! Solon girls win XC regional

SOLON– It was a tight finish.
However, with all five scoring runners in the top 20, Solon’s girls punched their ticket to state. Next stop? The starting line, Kennedy Park, Fort Dodge; noon, Saturday, at the Class 3A state cross country meet.

Hinman back to state

Boys fifth at state qualifier

SOLON– For Solon sophomore Gabe Hinman, it’ll be another afternoon on the links. But not for golf. He joins more than 100 other runners… and a couple thousand screaming, mobile fans at Kennedy Park Golf Course Saturday, Nov. 2, for the 2019 Iowa State High School Cross Country Meet.
Finishing 11th at Solon’s Oct. 24 Class 3A qualifying meet, Hinman will be in a starting box, 12:30 p.m., in Fort Dodge. He will be one of a couple dozen individual runners, in the 3A race. He also qualified a year ago, as a freshman, finishing 46th.

WaMaC last week; state qualifier Thursday for Solon boys

MANCHESTER– Solon’s boys hit seventh place in the Oct. 17 WaMaC cross country conference standings. They look now at the state qualifying meet, this week (Thursday, Oct. 24) at home.

Girls 2nd at WaMac XC meet

Lady Spartans host regional qualifier Oct. 24

MANCHESTER– With a runner-up finish in the 14-team WaMaC Conference cross country meet, Solon’s girls now take aim at their second season… the regional qualifier and, hopefully, a box on the starting line at the Nov. 2 Iowa girls high school state meet.

Boys 6th at North Linn, postseason ahead

TROY MILLS– Going into postseason runs, Solon’s boys notched a sixth-place finish among 16 teams at the 2019 North Linn invitational cross country meet, Oct. 12. “It was an amazing meet for the whole Solon cross country team. Almost every runner had season best times,” reviewed head coach Emy Williams. “We looked strong and really competed.”

Girls third over Hillcrest hills

KALONA– There is a reason most noise at cross country meets comes near the finish line. That’s where the crowd is! As runners close in on 5,000 meters, the fans want to see their finish.
Sure, Mid-Prairie’s top ranked– and Future Hall of Famer– Marie Hostletler is going to win by more than a minute each time out. However, the excitement builds as the next 10, 50 or 100 girls fight for position. Solon’s girls provided a couple such moments, at the Hillcrest Academy Invite, October 7.

Third place, but what a finish for Lady Spartan XC

WILLIAMSBURG– The rankings proved true. Mid-Prairie and Williamsburg were one-two among Class 2A teams, as rated by the state’s cross country coaches. And they finished right there, at the Oct. 1 Williamsburg Invite. Solon, ranked ninth in Class 3A, was third in the 10-team field, on a hot sultry afternoon, with thunderstorms just a few hours away.
“This meet was a tough one,” observed head coach Emy Williams. “The humidity and new course layout didn't help our times. We ran well and will start getting our legs fresh as we close in on conference and the state qualifying meet.”

Pack moving up; XC boys 4th at Williamsburg

WILLIAMSBURG– Solon’s boys showed up with a pack of runners in the top 30 this time. Still, top ranked (Class 2A) Tipton held court, with its five scorers going one-three-five-10-11, and its remaining two varsity runners 12th and 14th, to blow away the field in the Oct. 1 Williamsburg Invitational cross country meet.

Teen motivates Iowa City area climate activists

IOWA CITY– Swedish teen Greta Thunberg urged 3,000 climate advocates in downtown Iowa City to take on the worldwide crisis… before it is too late.
She shared a makeshift stage at Dubuque and Iowa Streets with local students who have been “climate striking” each Friday for months. The 16-year-old has made international headlines over the last couple months, including her solar-powered boat voyage across the Atlantic Ocean to speak at the United Nations climate summit a couple weeks ago.

Girls take the hardware at Anamosa cross country meet

Conway, Bock lead the way for Lady Spartans

ANAMOSA– There were a couple adjustments in the finishes, but it was still good for a meet title, as Solon outran the 10 (full) team field Sept. 28 in Anamosa. It was the girls’ second meet title this season.
Kiersten Conway (fourth place overall, 20:33) and Emma Bock (fifth, 20:49) swapped places again, as Solon’s one-two runners, pacing the 11th ranked (Class 3A) Lady Spartans over a wet, hilly course– on a meet morning that bordered on chilly, for the first time this season.