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O'Gorman's Libby Castelli, Hill City's Luke Rupert named SD Gatorade cross country runners of the year

Jan. 30—SIOUX FALLS — O'Gorman junior Libby Castelli and Hill City senior Luke Rupert have been awarded as the South Dakota Gatorade cross country athletes of the year.

Castelli, a 5-foot-3 junior, was the Class AA state champion for the Knights in 17:31.91, winning her race by nearly 30 seconds. Castelli was also an all-state soccer team selection during the fall for O'Gorman and qualified for the Nike Cross Country High School national championships on the strength of a fourth-place finish at the Heartland Regional.

She is the second Gatorade player of the year in the family for cross country, joining her sister Katie in 2020, who now competes at the University of Santa Clara in California.

Rupert, a 5-foot-10 senior, won the Class A state title for the Rangers in October with a winning time of 15:26.51, 21 seconds ahead of the next closest finisher. He also powered Hill City to the Class A team title, the Rangers' first since 2007.

He was also 39th at the Nike Heartland Regional championships (15:29.40), the top finish among South Dakota boys in the race. Rupert, who is a member of the Hill City Fire Department, has not yet decided on a college choice.