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Well, that was close.
Vandalia junior Ben Strobel earned the final spot to the state cross country meet at Saturday's St. Teresa Sectional in Decatur, finishing 10th in the 5K race.
Ordinaraily, that would have easily put Strobel into the state meet, but because there were so many good runners in the race, his time of 15:46 almost fell short.
By rule, the top seven individuals who are not part of teams participating in the state series advance to Peoria, but because all seven individual finishers at St. Teresa were in the top 10, an extra individual qualified.
Jon Davis, a sophomore from Oakwood, was the sectional champion, with a time of 14:46, and the seventh individual qualifier and ninth-place runner, Altamont's Andrew Sharp, completed the course in 15:44.
The state meet will be held next Saturday at Detweiller Park in Peoria.
This will be Strobel's second trip to state. Last season, he finished 78th, with a time of 16:15.