By: Les Knutson
Murray County News Sports
Once again running with her smooth and flowing stride, Fulda sophomore Morgan Gehl represented the Murray County Central / Fulda Rebels in grand fashion at the 2018 Minnesota high school cross country championships at St. Olaf College in Northfield last Saturday, November 3.
Running up near the front of the huge pack of 176 qualifying runners from beginning to end, Gehl finished third in the Class A girls’ race with an extraordinary 5,000-meter time of 17:53.9, her second-fastest ever.
Gehl’s superlative performance Saturday continues her lock at being one of the very best girls’ distance runners in all of Minnesota, excelling in cross country in the fall and on the track in the spring. She was fourth in both the 3,200 (10:59.91) and the 1,600 (5:04.23) at the state track and field meet in early June.
“Good,” was how Morgan answered the question of how she did in her fourth state cross country race. That, of course, is a huge understatement from the humble — but very determined — all-around athlete, who will now turn her attention to the upcoming basketball season.
Her cross country coach, MCC science instructor Dominick Damm, was a bit more vocal when discussing Morgan’s stellar accomplishment.
“Morgan ran a great race, like she always does,” he declared. “She ran smart, positioned herself well and outran the entire field, except for the Ping sisters. Morgan ran faster than 18 minutes, like she has done twice before, and — get this — she had the fifth fastest time of all 352 girls (176 in each class) who were up here (at state) competing on this course.”
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