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home : sports & recreation : sports & recreation December 11, 2017

10/17/2017 1:32:00 PM
Personal bests abound at George Fox meet
The Outlaws cross-country team gets off to a good start in George Fox Classic. photo by Charlie Kanzig
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The Outlaws cross-country team gets off to a good start in George Fox Classic. photo by Charlie Kanzig

By Charlie Kanzig

With two weeks to go before the state qualifying Sky-Em District meet, the Sisters Outlaws cross-country teams needed a high-quality meet on a fast course to reveal their racing condition, and the George Fox Invitational provided just that as nearly every member of the team ran either a personal or season best.

The meet, held at Willamette Mission State Park north of Salem, featured dozens of schools of all classifications from throughout Oregon, giving each of the three divisional races, Gold, Silver, and Bronze, quality depth.

Sisters elected to run in the Silver Division, 14 teams from 4A, 5A and 6A classifications. After witnessing personal records throughout the boys' and girls' junior varsity races, the varsity Outlaws runners were anxious to toe the line.

Anna Bartlett, the team leader, placed 10th, just four seconds off her personal best with a time of 20:01, while the remaining six varsity runners all ran season bests.

Ella Cole placed 35th (21:08) just ahead of fellow junior Amy Hills who placed fortieth in 21:15. Tate Ricker came in right on Hills' heels in 21:17 and Engracia Diez completed the scoring for the Outlaws in 64th place in 21:55 among 103 finishers.

Brooke Robillard (22:48) and Iris Diez (23:20) both ran significant PRs as the team's sixth and seventh runners.

"The times were quick on a very fast course, which is fun, but I was even more pleased with just how the girls packed together and really ran as a team," said Coach Josh Nordell.

Sisters placed seventh as a team with 176 points among the fourteen teams in the Silver Division. Siuslaw, the only other 4A team in the division, placed finished third with 115 points. The Vikings are ranked third in the latest coaches' poll, while the Outlaws are ranked eighth.

The boys had an equally good time as the "freshman four" rallied behind senior leader Jordan Pollard, who finished fourth in 16:21.

Ethan Hosang blazed to 12th place in 16:39.7, which puts him in rare company among freshman in Oregon. He is among the top ten freshman of any classification in Oregon.

Fellow ninth-graders John Peckham (17:38), Will Thorsett (17:49), and Vicente Rebolledo (18:26) rounded out the scoring for Sisters, which looks forward to the return of regular top-five runner Josh Liddell, a sophomore, who missed the meet.

Jack Berg (18:41) ran a personal best by over 40 seconds, and Cole Pade ran near his best ever (18:50) despite a nagging leg injury.

The boys' team, ranked fifth in this week's coaches' poll, finished with 285 points as the second 4A team in the Silver Division. Fourth-ranked Valley Catholic placed sixth.

"We ran very well, but of course we missed having Josh in the race, so we look forward to being at full strength for District on October 26," said Nordell. "Jordan has been stellar, and our freshmen are as good as any in Oregon, so I can't really be more pleased."

As a fun-filled tune-up to the District meet the Outlaws will take part in the Central Oregon Relays on Wednesday, October 18. The meet gives the team a chance to do a little racing while also escaping the pressure of a regular 5,000-meter race, according to Nordell.

"The kids dress up in silly costumes and run in teams of four, with each team member completing three 1,100-meter circuits in relay fashion on a course at the Pine Nursery in Bend," explained Nordell. "It's a great speed workout as well as just a time to have some fun with the other teams from Central Oregon."

The meet begins at 3 p.m.

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