Sophomore Moore Leads Prairie to Dominant Cross-Country Win

By Jeff Linder, Reporter

MARION, Iowa — Jake Moore gets it now. He really gets it.

The guys have told me, "Train hard. Race fast," said the sophomore from Cedar Rapids Prairie.

The seniors have led. Moore has listened. And just watch him run now.

Moore paced the Prairie boys to a dominating performance at Thursday's Class 4A state-qualifying cross country meet at the Tuma Soccer Complex. He won the individual crown in 15 minutes, 36 seconds as the Hawks established themselves as a championship contender.

Prairie placed four runners in the top five and tabulated 26 points, well ahead of Dubuque Hempstead (53) and Iowa City West (77), both of which join the Hawks at the state meet Nov. 2 at Lakeside Golf Course, Fort Dodge.

Led by individual champion Ashlynn Yokom, West led the girls field with 41 points. The Women of Troy were followed by Cedar Rapids Kennedy (64) and Muscatine (80).

Prairie had been led largely by the duo of Mitch Pritts and Isaiah Vlasek. Now, Moore is in the mix as well.

"He's really starting to believe," said Hawks Coach Bill Schwarz. "He's got a lot of untapped potential. I think he can be the best runner we've ever had. I don't think he had the confidence that he could run that fast. But as time has passed, he has picked up the pace and learned he can compete."

Moore finished 2 seconds ahead of Hempstead's Jon Specht, then it was three more checkerboard-clad Hawks: Pritts was third, Vlasek fourth, Tysen Vandraska fifth.

Prairie appears headed for a three-team race for the 4A title next week, along with Linn-Mar and Johnston.

"I think Linn-Mar is the team to beat," Schwarz said. "I'd like to think we can give them a battle."

Yokom was the class of the girls' field from gun to finish line, racing in 14:24 and winning by 37 seconds over Cedar Rapids Washington's Shannon Gorman.

"I guess I just like to get away as soon as I can, and push comfortably forward through the race," Yokom said. "I like to visualize somebody right there next to me."

Thursday, she visualized McKenzie Yanek of Pleasant Valley, probably the state favorite.

"I haven't run against her yet this season," Yokom said. "She's a great runner."

West's next three runners were the Skopec sisters — Emmie was sixth, Jessie was eighth, Gabby was 11th.

Gorman held off Kennedy's Alyssa Averhoff for the second spot, in 15:01.

Thursday's race was held in 40-degree, blustery conditions, and Gorman was ready. No tights, no UnderArmour top.

"Last year, it was cold at districts and I didn't run well," Gorman said. "So I prepared by getting used to it this week. I warmed up with my sweats on, then took them off for my workout. I think that helped.

Like West, Kennedy had three top-10 girls — Averhoff (third), Allison Culver (ninth) and Lauren Meyer (10th).

West's Daniel Gardarsson and Akash Borde were sixth and seventh in the boys race. Washington's Sam Eck was 10th.

CLASS 4A STATE-QUALIFIER

At Tuma Soccer Complex

(Top 3 teams, top 10 individuals advance to state)

GIRLS

Teams – 1. Iowa City West 41, 2. C.R. Kennedy 64, 3. Muscatine 80, 4. C.R. Prairie 119, 5. C.R. Washington 125, 6. Dubuque Hempstead 148, 7. Waterloo West 172, 8. C.R. Jefferson 186, 9. Ottumwa 250, 10. Waterloo East 299.

Individuals — 1. Ashlynn Yokom (ICW), 14:24; 2. Shannon Gorman (CRW), 15:01; 3. Alyssa Averhoff (CRK), 15:05; 4. Brina Kraft (Musc), 15:08; 5. Sammie Sproul (WW), 15:10; 6. Emmie Skopec (ICW), 15:10; 7. Abby Harbin (DH), 15:14; 8. Jessie Skopec (ICW), 15:21; 9. Allison Culver (CRK), 15:30; 10. Lauren Meyer (CRK), 15:36.

I.C. West — 1. Yokom, 6. E. Skopec, 8. J. Skopec, 11. Gabby Skopec, 15:45; 15. Olivia Moore, 16:02.

Kennedy — 3. Averhoff, 9. Culver, 10. Meyer, 14. Laura Feld, 15:58; 28. Carolyn Stone, 16:22.

Prairie — 12. Cayla Renwick, 15:51; 17. Eilish Stanek, 16:05; 22. Katie Costigan, 16:16; 32. Victoria Enyart, 16:30; 36. Sophia Smith, 16:35.

Washington – 2. Gorman, 16. Morgan Stuckenschneider, 16:04; 25. Madison Stuckenschneider, 16:18; 35. Kristin Mackenburg, 16:34; 47. Brett Visser, 17:25.

Jefferson — 23. Meredith Koenigsfeld, 16:17; 24. Sara Hannah, 16:18; 37. Megan Ely, 16:38; 49. Caleigh Meyer, 17:30; 53. Maddie Robinson, 17:37.

BOYS

Teams – 1. C.R. Prairie 26, 2. Dubuque Hempstead 53, 3. Iowa City West 77, 4. Waterloo West 107, 5. Muscatine 158, 6. C.R. Washington 161, 7. C.R. Kennedy 189, 8. Ottumwa 218, 9. C.R. Jefferson 226.

Individuals — 1. Jake Moore (CRP), 15:36; 2. Jon Specht (DH), 15:38; 3. Mitch Pritts (CRP), 15:44; 4. Isaiah Vlasek (CRP), 16:01; 5. Tysen Vandraska (CRP), 16:04; 6. Daniel Gardarrson (ICW), 16:05; 7. Akash Borde (ICW), 16:17; 8. Joe Meehan (DH), 16:17; 9. Cody McConnell (Ott), 16:24; 10. Sam Eck (CRW), 16:27.

Prairie — 1. Moore, 3. Pritts, 4. Vlasek, 5. Vandraska, 13. Ross Adams, 16:35.

I.C. West – 6. Gardarsson, 7. Borde, 14. Wynton Karanja, 16:37; 23. Abdallah Ali, 16:57; 27. Matthew Schneider, 17:01.

Washington — 10. Eck, 34. Ian Klopfenstein, 17:23; 36. Finbar Berry, 17:33; 38. Robbie Gearhart, 17:36; 43. Wyatt Forster, 17:52.

Kennedy – 25. Addison Furry, 16:59; 31. Matt Stevens, 17:10; 40. Derek Girling, 17:46; 44. Tim Zange, 17:56; 49. Ignacio Perea, 18:19.

Jefferson – 22. Tim Bell, 16:50; 45. Jason Chung, 17:58; 51. Nathan Prochnow, 18:22; 52. Christopher Haring, 18:23; 56. Nate Homan, 18:35.
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