Photo by KCII Sports Zach Ulin.

The first varsity cross country season for Washington’s Claire Horak culminated with a top 25 performance this weekend at the state meet. Horak, the first Demon state qualifier since Kelsey Anding in 2007, posted the 21st best finish in the Class 3A girls race with a time of 19:49. Center-Point Urbana’s Adrianna Katcher won the individual state title, crossing the finish line in 18:27.7. The state cross country meet was held Saturday at the Lakeside Municipal Golf Course in Fort Dodge.

Horak became the Demons’ number one girls’ runner after a seventh place finish at the Iowa Mennonite School Early Bird Invitational on August 30. She posted top 10 finishes in every race prior to the state meet, including six straight top-five finishes. Her best performance came at the Southeast Conference meet on October 13th at Fairfield’s Waterworks Park. Her time of 18:49 ranked second in the conference. She recorded sub-20 minute times in her final three races of the season.