Jr. High Cross Country Competes in First-Ever Meet


Jr. Lady Rocket runners take off at the start.

Jared Juenger, Co-Editor-in-Chief

Okawville Athletics has made the addition of Junior High Cross Country.  Cross country is a growing sport all over the state. The administration agreed to allow the new addition so runners will be prepared when heading to the high school level of cross country. Cross country is a long-distance running sport. At the junior high level, the distance is usually about 2 miles. 

Okawville’s first Junior High Cross Country team consists of six 8th-graders, seven 7th-graders, and fourteen 6th-graders.  The 8th-graders are Kaylie Behrman, Kaden Buehler, Gabe Charles, Emil Galliano, Clay Maynard, and Bella Muniz.  The 7th-graders include Tessa Frantz, Petra Galliano, Emma Hokeness, Megan Priester, Magdalynn Ramicone, Hunter Smith, and Taylor Statler. The 6th-graders are Olivia Bergmann, Payton Christ, Mallory Epplin, Peyton Harris, Emmerson Hasheider, Brenden Heizer, Ransom Lugge, Emmalyne Muniz, Lucy Pille, Josephine Schmersahl, Izabella Shubert, Delaney Viehl, Lydia Waltrip, and Skylar Wilfong. Former OHS Cross Country runner and 2019 graduate, Abby Riechmann, was hired as the Junior High Cross Country coach.

The team’s first meet was on Saturday, August 27. The girls’ race started at 8 am.  The girls’ team placed 15th out of 22 teams with a total of 349 runners. Emmerson Hasheider led the team placing 81st with a time of 14:53. Emma Hokeness finished 109th, Josephine Schmersahl 144th, Delaney Viehl 145th, Kaylie Behrman 163rd, Taylor Statler 166th, Mallory Epplin 189th, Lydia Waltrip 198th, Tessa Frantz 220th, Megan Priester 260th, Payton Harris 261st, Emmalyne Muniz 271st, Bella Muniz 275th, Olivia Bergmann 277th, Payton Christ 332nd, Lucy Pille 338th, Izabella Shubert 339th, and Skylar Wilfong 341st.

The boys’ race followed after. Emil Galliano led Okawville finishing 43rd with a time of 12:56. Gabe Charles finished 148th, Ransom Lugge 197th, and Brenden Heizer 274th. There were 291 runners in the boys’ race.

The Jr. Rockets will hold a home meet on September 8 at the OCYA park. Good luck to our Jr. Rocket cross country runners as they continue their first season!

Jr. High Boys’ Team
Jr. High Girls’ Team