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Cassie Beseman, center, #742, leads the Yellowjackets at the start of the Class A state meet. Photos by Bob Williams.

State Cross-Country: Beseman leads girls to 10th place in final meet

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NORTHFIELD -- Cassie Beseman, in her final race as a Yellowjacket, led Perham, as she has all season, to a 10th place finish at the Class A State Cross Country Meet, Saturday, Nov. 5, in Northfield.

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"It's bittersweet," Beseman said. "We ran well together, as a team."

The girls team improves on a 12th place finish at last year's state meet and also finished in front of Park Rapids, a team that bested them for this year's Section 8A title in Bagley.

Defeating Park Rapids was a motivating factor for Coach Morris, as he mentioned in post-race interviews.

For Beseman, the lone senior, speaking for the rest of her team, however, the feelings are a little more subdued.

"It's nice, but we're friends and everything," she said. "We weren't out there like we had to beat them."

Beseman leaves a hole in next season's lineup. She brought the experience of five visits to state meet.

"The girls improved on last year's finish and Cassie Beseman had a heck of a career," Head Coach Jeff Morris said.

Ciarrin Covington, who finished fifth on the team, 110th overall and 67th in team placing will be a senior next season.

The remainder of Perham's scoring top five were: Sydney Karels, an eighth grader, 62nd overall, 34th-team, in a time of 16:05.4; Brynnan Covington, a seventh grader, 79th overall, 47th-team, 16:18.8; and Racole Karels, a sophomore, 95th overall, 54th-team, 16:5.0.

"They're going to have to have someone step up and Brynnan and Sydney have both stepped up and wanted to lead more and more toward the end of the races. Without running with me at Park Rapids, they really showed they were capable of it."

Beseman missed all-state honors by only 15 seconds and was the only Yellowjacket to complete the 4k-course in less than 16 minutes with a time of 15:45.6.

She finished in 40th overall and 25th in team placing. Her time was a personal best at the state meet.

Sophomore Lizzie Fudge, 114th overall, and Mary Riestenberg, also a sophomore, 154th overall will bring some added experience to next year's squad, who will attempt to make their ninth straight appearance at the state meet.

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Robert Williams
Robert has been the Sports Editor for the Focus since 2010 covering multiple state and national championship teams and is a mainstay at state tournaments each season covering the successful, athletic programs of Perham and New York Mills High Schools.
(218) 346-5900 x223
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