• Roger Sims, Journal Staff

Allen earns gold at regional meet, heads to state

Updated: Oct 26

Prairie View cross-country runner Bree Allen celebrates her second regional championship after winning the meet at Council Grove last Saturday. The sophomore will be shooting for the state championship this weekend. (Screen capture, PV Cross Country Facebook page)

Up against some of the top teams in Class 3A competition at Council Grove on Saturday, Oct. 22, the Prairie View women’s cross country team was unable to repeat last year’s performance that gave them the regional championship trophy.

However, Bree Allen crossed the finish line well ahead of the second-place runner to make the Prairie View sophomore the regional champion for her second straight year. It also qualified her to run at the state meet this Saturday at Rim Rock, Kansas University’s cross country course north of Lawrence.

Allen completed the 5 kilometer course with a time of 19:41.11, more than 30 seconds ahead of the second-place runner, Emory Speece of Osage City.

Allen’s sophomore teammate Wylie Teagarden placed 20th with a time of 22:30.00. Ryleigh Leuker, also a sophomore, was 31st, followed by junior Kelsey Konitzer in 31st out of a field of 72 competitors.

Sophomore Kally Stroup placed 40th, Ella McCammon was 61st, and Ella Steinle was 66th.

The Prairie View team placed fourth at the meet with 101 points, 11 points behind third-place Smoky Valley with 90 points. Osage City had 88 points, and the winning team was Southeast of Saline with 38. Other Pioneer League schools at the meet included sixth-place Santa Fe Trail, seventh-place Burlington, eighth-place Osawatomie and ninth-place Anderson County.

The team competing in the regionals includes, from left, Ryleigh Leuker, Ella Steinle, Ella McCammon, Kally Stroup, Kelsey Konitzer, Bree Allen and Wylie Teagarden. (Screen capture, PV Cross Country Facebook)

“We knew going into regionals that it would be tough competition,” said Prairie View head coach Marcie Caldwell. She noted that some runners and teams that were expected to do well at the meet did not meet those expectations.

“The results from that day show it doesn’t matter who has raced what times and which teams are the ones to beat according to whichever poll,” she said. “It only matters what happens when they are all at the starting line together.

Caldwell said the team was disappointed they didn’t make it into the top three qualifying teams.

“They had worked hard at improving through the season, it just wasn’t quite enough,” she said. “Going against five of the top seven running schools at the regional took the competition to another level.

“Bree Allen ran beautifully, kept an even pace and good form to maintain a significant lead over the second-place runner.”

As for Saturday’s race at Lawrence, Caldwell said that Allen had been to Rim Rock to watch her sister compete, but this will be her first time on the course. Allen’s sister is former Prairie View runner Brooke Allen, who now runs for Baker University.

“I’m excited for this opportunity for her, it’s a great course, and if all goes well Bree will be standing in the front as a state champion.” Caldwell said. “The rest of the team will be there to get her warmed up and to cheer her on during the race.”

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