Here are 24 high school cross country runners to watch this season

Jason Brown
The Leavenworth Times

With the fall sports season already in full swing, let's take a look at some of Leavenworth County's top cross country runners on both the boys and girl's side for this season. If you missed our previous athlete lists for this season, check out the top senior football players and underclassmen football players, as well as, volleyball players to watch at Leavenworthtimes.com/sports

Check out each local high school's top runners to watch this season below. 

Lansing High School

The Lions took their boy's team to the Class 5A state meet last season and grabbed an eighth-place overall finish with the majority of the team returning for this season. The Lions already picked up team wins against Tonganoxie in a dual and at the eight-team Joe Schrag Invite at Stateland Cross Country Course in Topeka. On the girl's side, the Lady Lions return one state runner from last season but have a handful of athletes poised to raise that number this season.

Kenneth Howell

Kenneth Howell

The senior will look to improve on his 21st-place finish at state last season and has already gotten off to a solid start. He took third place at the Lansing - Tonganoxie dual meet Saturday with a time of 17:35. Howell finished right behind teammate Jackson Steger at the Joe Schrag Invite, taking fourth place. 

Niklas Schintgen

Niklas Schintgen

 Schintgen was Lansing's third-best finisher at the Joe Schrag Invite Saturday, taking eighth place. The freshman is already making a big impact on a Lions team that is loaded with plenty of other talent. 

Jackson Steger

Jackson Steger

Steger was Lansing's second-best state finisher last season in 29th and the junior has already shown more improvement with a second-place finish at the Lansing-Tonganoxie dual, finishing in 17:33. He grabbed his second top-three finish of the season in two meets, taking third place at the Joe Schrag Invite. 

Anya Anderson

Anya Anderson

Anderson was the Lady Lions' lone state representative as a freshman last season and she came home with a 53rd place finish. The sophomore opened her 2021 season with a second-place finish at the Lansing - Tonganoxie duals with a time of 22:49. She nearly had a top-10 finish at the Joe Schrag Invite but finished in 11th. 

Allison Muzzy

Allison Muzzy

Muzzy missed out on the state meet last season after taking 23rd place at the regional meet last season. She finished in eighth place at the Lansing - Tonganoxie dual to open the season with a time of 25:09. Her 22nd place finish at the Joe Schrag Invite was the second-best for the Lady Lions. 

Rebekah Tanner

Tanner competed with Leavenworth in her freshman season and finished 96th at the 5A state championship before transferring to Lansing this year. She started her sophomore season with a seventh-place finish at the Lansing - Tonganoxie Dual then grabbed 29th at the Joe Schrag Invite. 

Others to watch: Austin Howell, Tommy Rookard

Leavenworth High School

The Lady Pioneers qualified for the Class 5A state meet last season and return two of their top-four finishers and appear to have an impactful newcomer on the team. The boy's team missed the state meet last season but looks to be loaded with plenty of young talent that can get them there. 

Jonathan Purvis

The sophomore was the Pioneers' top finisher in the season-opening Manhattan Invitational in Manhattan. Purvis took 12th place and completed the course in 17:12.4. He followed with an even better finish a week later at the Joe Schrag Invite, taking sixth-place in the field of more than 50 runners.

Shawn Sullivan

Another sophomore followed Purvis for the second-best finish on the team as Sullivan took 32nd place with a time of 18:14. Sullivan shaved nearly 15 seconds off his time at the Joe Schrag Invite for a 14th-place finish. 

Liam Mandeville

As a sophomore, Mandeville notched a 40th-place finish at the regional meet last season, marking one of the Pioneers' top returning placers. This season, the junior opened with a 40th-place finish at the Joe Schrag Invite.

Emma Torres 

Torres was the Lady Pioneers' fourth-best finisher at the state meet last season, taking 79th overall. In her first meet of the season, she was the Lady Pioneers' top finisher at the Manhattan Invite, finishing in 30th with a time of 22:26.5.

Bo Groof

The sophomore joined the Lady Pioneers' varsity squad this season and is already making an impact. In two races, she has been Leavenworth's second-best finisher taking 42nd at Manhattan and 25th at the Joe Schrag Invite. 

Micayla Herlihy

As a freshman, Herlihy took 41st place at the 5A state championship last season and was Leavenworth's second-best finisher. In 2021, after missing the Manhattan Invitational to open the season, Herlihy grabbed a 26th-place finish at the Joe Schrag Invitational Saturday. 

Basehor-Linwood High School

The Bobcats return many runners on the girl's side who competed in the state meet last season while the boys have a trio of seniors to lead the team after losing their one state qualifier from last season to graduation. 

Luke Oliver

Oliver had a strong start to the season with a 26th-place finish at the Bobcat Invitational then placed 62nd in a strong field at the Emporia Invitational. As a junior, Farris took 27th at the United Kansas Conference Championships and 20th at the 5A regional meet. 

Austin Glezen 

The senior opened the season at the Bobcat Invitational with a 26th-place finish and followed with a 66th-place finish at the Emporia Invitational. His junior season ended with a 20th-place finish at the 5A regional meet. 

Marc Farris

Farris was the Bobcats' top finisher at the season-opening Bobcat Invitational, grabbing an 18th-place finish. At Emporia, Farris came in 82nd place behind his other senior teammates. The senior will look to build on a 28th-place finish at the 2020 regional meet.

Maya Pebley

The senior was the Lady Bobcats top finisher at the Class 5A state meet in 2020 with a 63rd-place finish. In 2021, she grabbed a 33rd-place finish at the Bobcat Invitational and was 64th at the Emporia Invitational Saturday. 

Alyiah Shirley

Shirley was the second-best finisher for Basehor-Linwood at last year's 5A state meet, taking 77th as a freshman. She had a strong start to the 2021 season with an 11th-place finish at the Bobcat Invitational, followed by a 33rd-place finish at Emporia. 

Kodi Greer

The sophomore has had a solid start to the 2021 season starting with a 16th-place finish at the Bobcat Invitational and a 33rd-place finish at the Emporia Invite Saturday. Greer is a newcomer to the varsity squad and is already placing near the squad's top runners.

Pleasant Ridge High School

The Rams qualified one from their boy's team for the Class 3A state championships but have a solid group of experienced runners on both their boy's and girl's teams to potentially take them to state this season.

Logan Beying 

Beying returns for his senior season after qualifying for and taking 63rd place at the Class 3A state championships last season. He grabbed a 23rd-place finish at the Bobcat Invitational before running in a crowded field at the Olathe North Twilight meet for a 139th place finish. 

Drake Duncan

The junior opened the season with a 49th-place finish at the Bobcat Invitational.

Tristen Baker

The junior was the Rams' second-best finisher at the Class 3A regional meet last season, placing in 22nd and just missing out on state qualification. He opened 2021 with a 51st-place finish at the Bobcat Invitational. 

Katie Heim 

The senior opened her season with a 56th-place finish at the Bobcat Invitational. As a junior, she placed 39th at the 3A regional meet. 

Alice Mattox

The sophomore was one of the Lady Rams' top runners last season, placing 15th in the 3A regional. She opened 2021 with a 50th place finish at the Bobcat Invitational to lead the team.

Autumn Sass

The sophomore took 25th at the 3A regional meet last season but missed out on state. She made up for it by qualifying for state in track and field in the 800-meter run. This season, she opened with a 63rd place finish at the Bobcat Invitational.

If you have photos of local runners competing this season, please send them to sports@leavenworthtimes.com

Jason Brown is the sports editor of the Leavenworth Times. Contact him at jbrown@leavenworthtimes.com