There was something for everyone when Ferris won the war and North Central’s Ben Johnston won the battle Wednesday to determine the Greater Spokane League boys cross country champion.
Ferris’ Saxons were tested in the 26-29 victory, as Johnston outlegged Saxons ace Adam Thorne over the last half of the 3.1-mile race at Audubon Park, tying the course record of 15 minutes, 12 seconds. Johnston said the plan, “a mile and one-halfish” into the race, was to, “just stay with him and see what I could do. I stuck with him and was like, ‘All right, if I’m going to do this, I might as well go.’ ”
Thorne was out front until then, followed by a pair of Indians, with 11 others bunched together. Through the second loop, two points separated the teams with their fifth runners nearly tied.
Saxons Alex Kimsey and Tim Colliton followed Thorne and Shadle Park sophomore Nathan Weitz into the finish chute. The efforts of Kimsey and Colliton spelled the difference, Ferris coach Mike Hadway said.
“Honestly, me and Alex felt we had to stick together, and kind of stay with NC’s top guys,” Colliton said. “After that, Alex took off and I followed in his footsteps.”
With the victory, Ferris completed a 10-0 record to dethrone the two-time defending champion Indians (9-1). East Valley (2-8) edged Shadle Park (1-9), 27-28.
In other races, visiting Mt. Spokane (8-2) beat rival Mead to finish third and University also topped the Panthers to tie them and Lewis and Clark at 6-4. Mead Freshman Andrew Gardner, edged Wildcats veteran Allan Schroeder 16:04 to 16:07. … At Manito park, host LC had the top four finishers to beat Central Valley (3-7) and Rogers (0-10).
•Girls : In a race between talented freshmen, Shadle’s Kendra Weitz defeated NC’s Katie Knight. They had what are believed to be the second- and third-fastest times in course history. Weitz won in 18:04 to 18:15. Coeur d’Alene’s Kinsey Gomez timed 17:57 earlier this year. The Highlanders (10-0) wrapped up a perfect season with easy victories over Ferris (6-4), North Central (3-7) and East Valley (1-9). … At Mead, the Panthers (9-1) topped Mt. Spokane (6-4) 24-34 with a 1-3 finish by Baylee Mires and Danielle Maldonado. Gonzaga Prep (4-6), whose Alicia Doohan took second, defeated University (2-8). … CV (8-2) had five of the first six finishers to beat LC (6-4) 19-37.