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Redbirds own the SWAL
Darlington junior Amy Jorgenson and Kayla Lange run during the SWAL Conference meet Thursday. Lange finished fourth (16:28) and Jorgenson was eighth (16:46) to help the Redbirds win the conference title.
DARLINGTON - Destin Komprood wore shoulder pads instead of running shoes in his first two years at Darlington High School.

Komprood, now a junior, decided to make the transition to cross country and he - along with freshman Tyson Miehe - helped the Redbirds run away with their third straight SWAL Conference championship. Miehe won the conference championship, finishing the 5,000-meter race with a time of 17 minutes, 18 seconds and Komprood was third (17:42).

Darlington outdistanced Boscobel 23-54 for the conference championship. The Darlington girls cross country team also won its third straight conference title 24-67 over Boscobel.

Komprood has run long distance in track, but this is his first year running cross country.

"I liked football. I wasn't really that good at it," Komprood said. "I found out what I could do in track so I decided to go out for cross country. I thought I could contribute and help the team out. I never imagined doing this good."

"That's what makes our team so strong," Darlington coach Arnie Miehe said of Komprood's success. "As the cross country season goes on, he's more in a groove and more confident. You know we were probably the favorite. With the depth we have, you know people will come through for you."

Tyson Miehe was excited to win a conference title.

"It's nice I can win it as a freshman," he said. "Not many people get to do that. We have sectionals (next) and then hopefully state."

It was more than a two-man race for the Redbirds. Darlington had six of the top 10 runners. Junior Kent Miehe, who was the conference champion last year, finished fifth (17:59) and junior Michael Sinclair was sixth (18:00). Sophomore Quinn Cullen came in eighth (18:04) and junior Brady McDaniel took ninth (18:09). Komprood finished as the Redbirds' 10th runner at the Wisconsin Rapids Invite last week.

Tyson Miehe is a believer that the Redbirds had a home course advantage and will again at the sectional at 4:30 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 22 in Darlington.

"We know what to do at every point of the race," Tyson Miehe said. "Some of it is the endurance in the race and some is the adrenaline from people cheering. That's really nice."

The Darlington girls team had six of the top 10 runners to capture the title. Sophomore Cheyenne Wolfe finished second in the 4,000-meter race (16:10), which was 19 seconds behind Fennimore senior and conference champion Kayla Sheckles (15:51).

"There is a lot in Cheyenne she doesn't know yet," Arnie Miehe said. "I'm very pleased with how she attacked the race."

Wolfe didn't need to be reminded about the Redbirds' history of winning the conference meet.

"We wanted to keep the streak going," she said.

Wolfe looks forward to another rematch with Sheckles.

"I wanted to give her a run for her money," Wolfe said. "We have sectionals and state if we both make it."

Darlington sophomore Christa Wamsley took third (16:27) and senior Kayla Lange was fourth (16:28). Freshman Claire Cullen took seventh (16:43), junior Amy Jorgenson finished eighth (16:46) and junior Hannah Robiolio was 10th (16:54).

"They are just a mirror image of the guys," Arnie Miehe said of the girls team, referencing the depth. "On any given day, someone can step up."