COLO - Robert Tyynismaa ran against top competition Monday and came out as the only medalist from South Tama County.
The STC junior cross country runner earned a medal at the Nevada Invitational with his top-10 finish. Tyynismaa ran a smart race, according to STC coach George Kuhter, at Hickory Grove Park.
Tyynismaa came through the first mile in the top 20, before moving up to around tenth place during the second mile. He continued to move up during the remainder of the 5-kilometer race as he finished eighth, in a time of 17:28.
"I like the way Robert runs his races," Kuhter said. "He needs to put on a clinic. Basically what we need to do is have everybody run that race. He ran a really good, smart first mile. His second mile was faster and his third mile was even better than the middle mile. That's what we've been preaching to the kids we have to start running the middle miles. We have to start running faster and it's a mental thing right now."
Tyynismaa led the Trojans, who competed in the Varsity Class A races against the larger schools at Monday's meet. The STC varsity boys finished 10th out of 10 teams, while the STC girls placed eighth out of 10 schools. The junior varsity and middle school races were combined, but no team scores were kept.
"We ran well, considering it's a Monday meet and it's the start of Homecoming week," Kuhter said. "The kids are focused on other things. Overall, the varsity girls and boys ran really well. We are a little behind expectation wise, but we are going to have to do a lot of hard work this week to make sure we stay focused and start to run well.
South Tama results
Varsity Boys - 8. Robert Tyynismaa, 17:28; 21. Blake Keller, 18:23; 52. Taylen Anderson, 19:37; 60. Jake Theissen, 20:06; 62. Hunter Filloon, 20:08; 66. Trevor Yuska, 20:24.
Varsity Girls - 18. Taylor Ellenbecker, 17:51; 40. Allison Yuska, 19:01; 45. Regina Balderas, 19:23; 52. Lauren Yuska, 19:48; 53. Jensen Vodochodsky, 19:49; 60. Ericka Dunning, 20:15; 63. Erin Filloon, 20:34.
JV Boys - 102. Andrew Kajer, 23:24; 114. Talon Lamb, 23:47; 144. Thayne Lamb, 25:39.
JV Girls - 33. Mallory Thede 20:58; 53. Shae Slaven, 21:39; 62. Kaitlin Berger, 22:04; 82. Courtney Anderson, 23:21; 84. Brittany Bear, 23:34.
Middle School Boys - 19. Lucas Wilkerson, 13:42; 33. Logan Wilkerson, 14:09; 40. Cameron Klostermann, 14:19; 98. Jake Wilkerson, 16:02; 153. Jacob Dostal, 17:58.
Middle School Girls - 10. Jessica Musgrave, 14:13; 73. Lauren Gumm, 17:21; 77. Esmerelda De La Torre, 17:30; 121. Sam Oliver,20:08.
Varsity Boys - Gilbert, 56; 2. North Polk, 67; Grinnell, 73; Nevada, 135; 5. Norwalk, 149; 6. Ballard, 150; 7. IFA-AGWSR, 167; 8. Carlisle 194; 9. Winterset, 200; 10. South Tama, 203.
Varsity Girls - 1. Gilbert, 38; 2. Winterset, 60; 3. Grinnell, 93; 4. Ballard, 124; 5. IFA-AGWSR, 129; 6. Nevada, 148; 7. North Polk, 183; 8. South Tama, 208; 9. Carlisle, 226; 10. Norwalk, 242
"Basically, we aren't going to see any of these guys, other than Grinnell, again this year," he said. "We'll be running against NICL and small schools for the rest of the season. Basically in three weeks, we have to be running the best we can. If we're not doing that, we can start pointing fingers and doing that stuff, but we have to remain positive and do what we can do."
Also placing high in the varsity boys race was STC sophomore Blake Keller. He finished 21st in a time of 18:23. Senior Taylen Anderson was the next Trojan across the finish line in 52nd. Junior Jake Theissen (60), freshman Hunter Filloon (62) and junior Trevor Yuska (66) rounded out the varsity boys lineup.
In the varsity girls race, senior Taylor Ellenbecker finished 18th and ran the 4-kilometer course in 17:51. Following her were freshman Allison Yuska, who placed 40th in 19:01, and senior Regina Balderas, who finished 45th in 19:23. Freshman Lauren Yuska (52), freshman Jensen Vodochodsky (53), junior Ericka Dunning (60) and senior Erin Filloon (63) were the other varsity runners.
"I think we have to get everybody on the same page and get them running as a pack," Kuhter said. "The varsity boys and girls ran as a pack, but we have to get out faster and use what we've got. I think the girls' spread was almost three minutes and the boys' spread was maybe four minutes. We have to close that up, especially if we're going to compete. I think we're still a top three NICL team and I firmly believe it. We have to start believing in ourselves."
Freshman Mallory Thede was the Trojans' top JV runner Monday. She finished 38th the JV girls race. Junior Andrew Kajer was the top JV boys runner with a placing of 102nd.
In the middle school races, seventh grader Jessica Musgrave led the STC girls by finishing 10th and seventh grader Lucas Wilkerson finished 19th in the boys race.
"I'm really impressed with the way the kids have been practicing," Kuhter said. "I've been gone for a week, so we'll have to refocus a bit. This week is going to have to be a hard week and we have two meets next week. Then we go into our championship week so we've got to stay focused and keep doing what we're doing. We're doing a lot of positive things. I'm pretty happy with the way things are going."
South Tama will race Saturday morning in Eldora at the South Hardin Invitational.
"We usually race well there," Kuhter said. "It's Homecoming week and it's at the end of a long week. I think the guys will stay positive, because that's what type of team they are. We'll just wait and see what happens."