PREP ROUNDUP: Crater sweeps State of Jefferson race
A week free of wildfire smoke allowed several area cross-country teams to compete in the State of Jefferson meet at Ashland’s Oak Knoll Golf Course, where nearly everyone involved was racing in the Rogue Valley for the first time this season.
Crater claimed each of the individual wins, with sophomore Jeffrey Hellmann winning the boys race in 16 minutes, 29.57 seconds, ahead of Ashland junior Nathan Stein, who finished in 16:56.28, and Cascade Christian senior Jake Sorani, who finished in 17:06.34.
For the girls race, which ended in an unusual fashion, Crater sophomore Lindsay Siebert took first place with a time of 21:01.55. Ashland junior Annika Wells (21:23.40) and Grants Pass senior Mary Sturley (21:30) rounded out the top three. The Crater boys claimed first in team scoring with 25 points, and the Grants Pass girls team tallied 37 points to finish ahead of runner-up Crater (41) and third-place Ashland (46).
Madison Wilt of Grants Pass and Ashland’s Grace Yaconelli were leading the girls race by nearly a minute when they inadvertently took a shortcut on the Oak Knoll course, trimming approximately two minutes off of their times, and were eventually disqualified. Afterward, Ashland coach Karl Pryor took responsibility for the error, saying the course wasn’t marked well enough.
“They were following the flagging that we had, as they understood it, and cut a bit of the course,” Pryor said. “They both were running far out front, but unfortunately the course wasn’t clear to them and one of them took off and the other one followed.”
Siebert led the next group and clinched the win as she crossed the finish line. Ashland’s Violet Herring and Crater’s Samantha Payne also finished in the top five.
“When I saw her coming in the distance and she was leading, she was pretty pumped,” Crater coach Justin Loftus said of Siebert. “That was a big win for her.”
The Crater boys were led by a fast start from Hellmann, who was racing for the first time since a breakout performance Sept. 11 at the Saxon Invite when he recorded a PR of 15:24.6.
“Jeffrey went out strong and he finished strong,” Loftus said. “He was pretty much up there the whole way.”
The Comets were without a number of varsity boys runners coming off of a challenging training over the previous weekend, and the smoky conditions turning the team’s schedule upside down over the past month, Loftus said.
The conditions also put Ashland’s team behind schedule. The Grizzlies’ boys team has a combined eight freshmen and sophomores, Pryor said. Because of the slow start to the season, many are still working their way up to varsity and, as a result, the Ashland boys have not yet fielded a full varsity team to compete in team scoring, but that will soon change once Midwestern League competition begins.
“Like all the teams in the Rogue Valley, we’re probably three or four weeks to where I think we probably should be at this point in the season,” Pryor said, “and bringing along those younger runners — we’re just not there yet — and we didn’t want to put them in varsity races (yet). Today was kind of nice because we ran the JV and varsity groups together. The JV boys could get a little bit of a taste of what’s to come, and the level of competition, especially that Crater provides.”
TEAM SCORES: Crater 25, Grants Pass 34, Yreka 69.
INDIVIDUAL RESULTS (Top 20): 1, Jeffrey Hellmann, C, 16:29.57; 2, Nathan Stein, A, 16:56.28; 3, Jake Sorani, CC, 17:06.34; 4, Quaid Petronella, GP, 17:14.24; 5, Ryan Mitchell, W, 17:32.66; 6, Caleb Doddington, C, 18:27.88; 7, Ryder Hvall, C, 18:30.22; 8, Evan Tucker, GP, 18:36.65; 9, Matt Rieman, GP, 18:39.92; 10, Jaia Hannagan, GP, 18:40.83.
11, Ivar Hokanson, C, 18:59.20; 12, Aiden Huggins, C, 19:24.90; 13, Tayvon Kitchen, C, 19:25.34; 14, Victor Lujan, Y, 19:30.48; 15, Kyle Cox, T, 19:50.29; 16, Gabe Gregg, Y, 19:56.33; 17, Henry Baun, Y, 19:59.71; 18, Nathan Oliva, GP, 20:15.91; 19, Alex Krause, A, 20:36.14; 20, Jackson Allen, GP, 20:36.58.
TEAM SCORES: Grants Pass 37, Crater 41, Ashland 46.
INDIVIDUAL RESULTS (Top 20): 1, Lindsay Siebert, C, 21:01.55; 2, Annika Wells, A, 21:23.40; 3, Mary Sturley, GP, 21:30; 4, Violet Hering, A, 21:53.59; 5, Samantha Payne, C, 21:54.16; 6, Bailey Moritz, GP, 21:58.71; 7, Augustine Mylan, Y, 22:03.27; 8, Mattie Whipple, Y, 22:03.81; 9, Ellie Berg, GP, 22:07.35; 10, Haylee Baldwin, C, 22:18.84.
11, Nettle Grey, GP, 22:23.37; 12, Ayla Dance, C, 22:48.90; 13, Nikaela Apilada, A, 22:53.42; 14, Taylor Weber, GP, 23:00.95; 15, Lucía Duarte, W, 23:17.46; 16, Bela Marshak, GP, 23:25.83; 17, Saige Griffin, CC, 23:28.28; 18, Saniyah Ayala, A, 23:28.72; 19, Kariana Austbo, A, 23:39.46; 20, Darcie Range, FR, 23:55.77.
SKYLINE PRE-DISTRICT MEET: At Klamath Falls, senior Elwood Hosking was Phoenix’s top finisher on the boys side with a time of 22:18 as the Pirates got their first look at the Steen Sports Park course that will be the site of next month’s district meet.
For the Phoenix girls, Sophia Stubblefield recorded a time of 29:06, with teammates Kyla Potratz and Ava Robinson finishing right alongside her.
Complete results of the meet were not available as of press time.
GLIDE INVITATIONAL: At Glide, the St. Mary’s boys captured first place while Addie Jensen led the Crusader girls to a second-place showing at the Glide Invitational.
Jensen, a senior, won with a time of 22:07.
The St. Mary’s boys had three of the top four finishers, allowing the Crusaders to take first. Freshman Vincent Savage led the way for St. Mary’s with a second-place time of 18:44, while junior Cody Arnold finished third at 19:00 and senior Logan Diaz McNeal was fourth at 19:55.
Senior Calvin Chmelir came in at 21:15, while Will Doss rounded out the Crusaders’ top five boys finishers with a time of 21:38.
For the St. Mary’s girls, Sydney Godwin recorded a time of 24:36, followed up by Emily Bowdoin (27:37), Annabelle Mayerle (27:47) and Annikka Fetro (30:25).
BROOKINGS-HARBOR 3, CASCADE CHRISTIAN 0: At Brookings, Brookings-Harbor scored all three of its goals in the second half after a scoreless opening 40 minutes to get the win.
Brookings-Harbor (3-0) scored what proved to be the game-winning goal five minutes into the second half, then doubled its lead at the 60-minute mark. The Bruins added a third goal with 10 minutes to go.
Cascade Christian sophomore keeper Graycee Dorner finished with 11 saves. She got some help from her defense as well, as junior Autumn Murray had a strong game defensively, including a goal line clearance in the first half to keep the Bruins off the scoreboard.
The Challengers fell to 0-5 with the loss.