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The Woodbury boys finished in a tie for fifth place with 158 points at the 10-team SEC championship meet.

Woodbury cross country: Boys take fifth, girls finish seventh at SEC meet

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The Woodbury cross country team is heading toward the finish line.

Last week, the Royals boys and girls running teams competed in the Suburban East Conference Championship meet, held Tuesday, Oct. 16, at Falcon Ridge Golf Course in Stacy.

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In the 10-team meet, where runners earn All-Conference and All-Conference honorable mention awards, the Woodbury girls team earned seventh place with 179 place points and the Woodbury boys finished in a tie for fifth place with 158 points. Individual All-Conference awards go to the top 20 overall finishers, with the next 10 being awarded All-Conference honorable mention.

For the Woodbury girls, freshman runner Lauren Smith led the way, earning All-Conference honors by taking ninth place overall with a time of 14 minutes, 55 seconds in the 4K race. The second Royal across the finish line was Woodbury seventh-grader Haley Orf, who also brought home an All-Conference award, taking 17th place with a time of 15:06. In addition, sophomore Divya Melachuri (16:22) took 48th, senior Ainslee Neu (16:28) took 51st and sophomore Cat Henning (16:56) took 54th, rounding out the Royals' top five finishers.

The East Ridge girls team won a third consecutive SEC championship, totaling 50 place points, while White Bear Lake junior Bethany Kozak won the 4K race with a time of 13:59.

For the Woodbury boys, sophomore Nick Wareham earned All-Conference, taking 14th place, with a time of 16:34 in the 5K run. Junior Taylor Voit was the next Royals runner across the finish line, taking 22nd overall with a time of 16:57 to earn All-Conference honorable mention. Also, Woodbury senior Joey Wacker (17:17) took 34th, senior Matt Waterhouse (17:30) placed 38th and sophomore Paul Henning (17:56) took 50th to round out the Royals' top five.

Stillwater won the boys 5K run with 32 points. Stillwater senior Wayde Hall edged Cretin-Derham Hall senior Kevin Docherty by two seconds to take first place.

Next, Woodbury will race in the Section 4AA meet on Wednesday, Oct. 27, at the University of Minnesota's Les Bolstad Golf Course. At sections, the top two teams and the top 10 individual runners in the boys and girls race earn trips to state.

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