Central Valley boys and girls cross country teams left no doubt who would be the region’s 4A team champions, running roughshod over its opposition. North Central’s boys, however sweated out their regional title, won by the barest of margins over Kamiakin on Saturday at Wandermere Golf Course.
The defending state-champion Bears boys put six runners among the first 13 finishers during a 34-97 romp over Richland. The girls five scorers were bunched just 35 seconds apart between fifth and 14th places during its 48-68 victory over Walla Walla.
NC, which has won seven straight State 3A titles, eked out a 43-45 win over Kamiakin.
Joining them at state are Mt. Spokane’s boys and girls next Saturday in Pasco.
4A boys: As an incentive, CV went retro by hauling out new postseason uniforms for the second straight year.
“Pete Whitford won state in 1966,” coach Kieran Mahoney said. “So I got out the 1966 yearbook and I found those jerseys and I said let’s get some retro mojo.”
Corey Hunter, CV’s season-long leader, finished second 22 seconds behind Richland’s 15 minute-59 second individual champion Michael Williams. Less than a minute separated Hunter and six teammates.
“We’ve been champing at the bit to race on a flat course,” CV coach Kieran Mahoney said.
“Before the race I told the boys that our strength is racing together.”
Gonzaga Prep missed state by eight points, but Bullpup Ian Andres finished third to advance and a pair of Mead Panthers, Corbin Carlton and Tyler Brant, will join him.
4A girls: Briegan Bester overcame illness to lead the way for CV’s girls. She timed 19:44 in fifth, well back of Richland standout Lindsey Bradley (18:20).
Obviously coach Dennis McGuire was ecstatic about the Bears outcome. “Our plan was to run as a team,” he said. “They finished right where we wanted them to be.”
Lewis and Clark’s Gracie Ledwith was the Greater Spokane League’s highest finisher, placing third in 19:29. Gonzaga Prep’s Cyra Carlson (fourth) and Ann Moloney (ninth) and Ferris’ Anisa Allaet (eighth) also advanced to Pasco.
3A boys: The top four individual finishers, as expected, and 9 of 11 came from the GSL.
Mt. Spokane’s John Dressel outlegged Indians Tanner Anderson and Kai Wilmot, winning by four and 11 seconds in 15:41. Shadle Park’s Nicholas Hauger in fourth equaled the winning time in the 4A race.
Despite having four runners among the top nine finishers, there was worry in the NC camp because Kamiakin had seven finishers ahead of the Indians number five scorer, five of them separated by 38 seconds.
Next week is their turn, NC and Mt. Spokane joined by University’s Patrick Miranne.
3A girls: Shadle Park was edged out of the third state berth by Mt. Spokane, but the Highlanders had the highest- placing trio.
Lauren Dunnell was runnerup to team champion Kamiakin’s Kaylee Sanchez by three seconds in a time of 19:41.
Highlander teammates Gabi Gomez-Wint and Ashley Hauger, a freshman, finished sixth and seventh. But Shadle was short on depth.
NC’s Reanna Risinger finished ninth and goes on to state.
2A boys: The season-long one-two punch of Scott Kopczynski and Chad Stevens helped East Valley to the District 7 2A cross country title and send their team to state during one of six state-qualifying races at Plantes Ferry Park.
They took the top two places in the race, as they had done all season long, but it was Stevens who won, upsetting his teammate and state veteran by a scant 16:13.49 to 16:13.65.
Teammate Casey Pedersen’s sixth-place finish was the icing on the outcome as EV defeated Cheney 47-55. The Blackhawks finished three points ahead of regular-season champion Deer Park for the league’s second team berth.
State veteran Skylar Ovnicek, of West Valley, Colville’s Kevin Carpenter and Deer Park’s Ammon Hall and Brady Bollum advanced individually.
2A girls: Deer Park and Cheney return to state. The Stags, led by Moriah Duenich (fourth) and Karri Gallant (fifth), won 44-49.
State top-six finishers McCall Skay, WV, and Brittany Aquino, EV, finished 1-2.
Other individual qualifiers are Megan Lee, Colville, Cadie Bise, EV and Pullman’s Madeline Walker and Miranda Hyatt.
1A boys: Medical Lake captured the Districts 6/7 race at Plante’s Ferry which qualified four teams to state, Riverside and Lakeside among them.
The Cardinals, with three finishers among the top six, including race winner Micah Dingfield, finished with 47 points to 67 for the Rams and 73 for Lakeside, whose JT Lauderdale and Ryan Coffman were second and fourth..
1A girls: Last year’s state runnerup Lakeside defeated defending champ Riverside 33-47.
Riverside had the first- and third-place finishers in Rebecca Mildes and Mikayla Shuler. Medical Lake and Freeman also qualified.
1B/2B boys: Asotin’s Chandler Tiegan was the runaway winner by 33 seconds over Hunter Olson of St. George’s. Six boys teams: Champion Northwest Christian; Tri-Cities Prep; Asotin; St. George’s; Republic and Reardan advance.
1B/2B girls: St. George’s freshman Madison Ward rolled to a nearly 38 second win over St. John-Endicott’s Jordan Porubek. Asotin; St. John-Endicott; Reardan and Tri-Cities Prep qualified for state.