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Albia closes the gap on conference foes with 4th place at Centerville - Albia Newspapers: Sports

Albia closes the gap on conference foes with 4th place at Centerville

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Posted: Friday, October 6, 2017 9:48 am

In a meet that hosted some of the top 3A competition in the state, the Albia Blue Demons were able to run extremely well and finish with a top four finish and close the gap on conference foes. The Blue Demons have been working hard to close the gap with Eddyville and Davis County over the course of the last six meets, and were able to do just that.

Coach Todd Ratliff was quick to point out that the spread of the top six runners was the best it has been all season. There were less than two minutes that separated the top Blue Demon runner and the sixth place runner, with an average time for the scoring five at 19:09, also a season’s best. “We ran well tonight,” he said. “Davis County still ended up edging us out in the end, but if we remove all the non-conference runners from the race, it ends with a deadlock tie. This is the first time this season to be that close. We also were able to race past Eddyville-Blakesburg-Fremont tonight and beat them by 31 points.”

Leading the way for the Blue Demons with his eighth top six finish on the season was Brock Ratliff who completed the course in 18:08. Following close behind, and in only his second race of the season, was freshman Landon Noe who finished just outside the top 10 in 11th in a strong time of 18:29. “I thought Brock continued to work hard, and raced well against some tough competition tonight,” said Coach Ratliff. “The big surprise in the varsity race was the strength that Landon showed. To turn in a time like that, with winds that were on the course tonight is nothing short of incredible. He has only been back to running for eight days.”

The strong pack of Albia’s third through sixth place runners made a huge difference again for the team. Bradley Yenger completed the course in 19:30 (compared to 21:01 in 2016) and gathered 28 team points with Jacob Fisher and Cody Dalman racing each other to the line in times of 19:48 and 19:49 respectively for 33 and 34 team points. Lane Scieszinski was not far behind as he crossed the line in 20:00 (33 seconds quicker than a season ago) and displaced the competition’s team scores by posting 38 points.

Cole Folkerts continued his impressive junior campaign with a solid push through the last half mile of the course to cross the line in 20:31. “If you look at where the team was a year ago, they finished 10th at this meet with 292 points.” said Coach Ratliff. “This year they were able to finish fourth with just 112 points. That is an amazing improvement. I think that we have and will continue to do all that we can do to finish out the season. Meet after meet these young men give their best, and it is enjoyable to watch.”

Team scores were as follows: Oskaloosa first with 27, Ft. Madison 56, Davis County 105, Albia 112, EBF 143, Knoxville 165, Chariton 175, Kirksville, Mo. 193, Centerville 254, Central Decatur 260, Keokuk, Melcher-Dallas, Moravia, Twin Cedars, Seymour.

© 2017 Albia Newspapers. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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