By Tim Linscott
Emily Kemling led the pack of Perkins County runners at the state cross country meet on Friday, Oct. 25 in Kearney.
Kemling, a sophomore, finished 16th overall with a time of 20:58.1. This was a personal best for Kemling, who set out to break 21 minutes in a race at the beginning of the year. Although Kemling did not medal, she was only four seconds off of 15th place, won by Madison Lambley of Dundy County-Stratton (20:54.3).
“She ran a really smart race, moving up throughout the race and finishing strong,” Paula Wurst, PCS head cross country coach, said. “She will have opportunities the next two years to get that state medal.”
Katherine Lansman of Ord won the individual title with a time of 19:56.
Courtney Lyon finished with a time of 22:41.2 and was 63rd overall. She was within nine seconds of her personal best this season. Lyon finished in the middle of the medalists from districts and Kendra Hoffert was 98th overall with a time of 24:17.6. Hoffert was only eight out of the top 90 girls of previous medalists at districts.
“Given the number of competitors (136 total) and the tough course at state, they both did a great job,” Wurst said.
Korey Lake was 125th (26:30.6) and was within two seconds of her best time.
“Korey proved to us that her improvement at Bayard the week before was no fluke. She, like the other girls, put together her best race at the end of the season,” Wurst said.
Jakelynn Broeder was 132nd (30:06.4), and Wurst said she showed ‘a lot of heart’ and was very close to her best time.
“It takes courage to be the fifth or sixth runner on a state qualifying team. There aren’t a lot of girls with you. Jakelynn competed well with the girls around her,” Wurst said.
As a team, the Lady Plainsmen were 13th with 208 team points. Dundy County-Stratton was 12th with a team score of 199.
Crofton won the team title with 32 team points.
“The Perkins County girls’ cross country team had a great day at the state meet. I was very proud of everyone’s efforts; they all ran smart and tried their hardest, and I can never ask for more than that,” Wurst said. “Being the 13th best in the state is an accomplishment. What a great season!”