NORTHFIELD, Minn. - After sticking with a group of four runners early in the race, Jenna Truedson decided to make her move.
Truedson, a freshman, separated herself from the pack before the two-mile mark, and picked up a third place finish with a time of 14:23.9 at the Class AA girls cross country individual championship on Saturday.
"She ran a perfect race, very smart," Bemidji head coach Ryan Aylesworth said. "She hit the goal that she wanted to hit."
Truedson came into the meet as the state's fourth-ranked runner. She was aiming for a top-5 finish, and was glad to exceed her own expectations.
"I'm happy about it," Truedson said. "It was fun."
Truedson's mile time was 5:32.36.
The state's top two runners finished with a considerable gap between the rest of the pack. Maria Hauger of Shakopee finished first at 14:04.1. Jamie Piepenberg of Alexandria finished a close second with a time of 14:04.8.
Monticello captured the team championship with 93 points.
This was Truedson's second-straight state meet. Last season, she finished 17th, with a time of 15:01.1. Truedson improved her state meet time by over 37 seconds.
Truedson will return next season as one of the top runners in the state. Hauger, a junior, will return next year, while Piepenberg, a senior, will not return next year.
Sophomore Sam Carlson finished 44th in the boys cross country meet, coming in with a time of 16:29.7..
"I wanted to do better than that," Carlson said. "But to see all the guys who are ranked high, and to be able to run with them and see the fans everywhere, it was pretty cool."
Carlson completed the mile in 5:02.97.
Wayzata's Josh Thorson finished first with a time of 15:29.9. Stillwater won the team championship with 92 points.
Two Bagley-Fosston runners competed in the Class A individual meet. Junior Wesley Davies finished 64th in the boys meet, running a time of 17:28.3. Freshman Marissa Carlson finished 73rd in the girls meet with a time of 16:16.1.