11 runners treated for heat exhaustion during cross country meet in Stewartville

[anvplayer video=”5132713″ station=”998128″]

(ABC 6 News) – Thursday in Stewartville, was the Bill Glomski invite. Many schools from in and around the area gathered at Bear Cave Park some for their first race of the season. It was at the end of the girl’s cross country race that EMT’s had to jump into action.

Winona Cotter’s Sonja Semling was the first to cross the finish line but she says it wasn’t easy, “the last mile is where I think the heat just started kicking in, and I was pushing myself really hard. And I can remember seeing the finish line. But it was just hard to get all the way past with my condition and how I felt.”

Some of the runners started passing out. Emergency crews at the event say in total 14 were treated,11 for heat exhaustion and 4 had to be taken to the hospital.

The boy’s race was canceled a half mile in due to health and safety concerns.

Stewartville emergency responder Aaron Jones says it’s not uncommon for one or two runners get sick but he’s never seen anything like this, “the hard thing about a scene like that was that they were not in one area, you’ve got tents all over and each has an individualized area and so you had some that were collected in one area and so we had to collectively gather ourselves to figure things out.”

Even though Semling says she and her teammates practice in the heat often, but they could’ve prepared their bodies better on race day. “I think a lot of extra hydration and just mentally preparing for this and adjusting times to accompanying the conditions,” said Semling.

The condition of the girls who were taken to the hospital is unknown at this time.