News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

Outlaws prove ranking at meet

The Sisters Outlaws boys’ cross country team was ranked sixth among 4A schools following a late September coaches’ poll. They lived up to the ranking at the Paul Mariman Invitational held Saturday, October 9 at Philomath High School.

Of the 19 complete teams, Sisters placed fifth, behind top-ranked Siuslaw, second-ranked Philomath, and fifth-ranked Cottage Grove, along with Bandon, the number-one 3A team in Oregon.

“We needed this test to show we are very competitive at the 4A level,” said head coach Charlie Kanzig. “No one is going to touch Siuslaw this year, but we believe we can mix it up with any of the other 4A teams for sure.”

The Vikings won the meet with 31 points, followed by Philomath (91), Cottage Grove (117), Bandon (120), and Sisters (127). Marist, the third-ranked team entering the meet, finished next with 146 points.

As the scores indicate, the battle for second through sixth was tight. Sisters used a very tight pack with the top five scorers finishing just 45 seconds apart.

“That’s our strength, said Kanzig. “These guys can see one another and push forward as a team. It’s exciting to watch.”

Hayden Roth once again led the team, finishing fifteenth in a time of 17:39. Kaleb Briggs ran yet another personal best to place second for the team in 18:04, just ahead of Cole Jervis (18:08) and Max Palanuk (18:09). Freshman Spencer Tisdel came through with a thirty-eight second improvement to complete the scoring, in a time of 18:24.

“The older boys ran solidly, but Spencer saved the day for us,” said Kanzig.

The junior varsity boys, behind the efforts of Colton Middlestetter (19:52) and John Berg (19:53), who finished ninth and 10th respectively, placed third as a team.

The key for the Outlaws’ girls team remains a numbers game, according to Kanzig.

“Coping with an unusually small turnout for the girls’ team has been challenging for all of us,” he said. “We are accustomed to fielding a squad of 15 to 20 girls, but this year we are hovering around 10 total, which makes it tough.”

The girls continue to make progress, however, and Kanzig believes the team will be more complete and competitive by the district meet in late October,

Three girls competed in the varsity race and did quite well. Ella Bartlett (20:51) placed 10th and Sasha Stolasz, behind a 34 second personal best, finished fifteenth in 21:18. Nevaeh McAfee dropped 47 seconds to finish in 24:15.

In the junior varsity race, Mae Roth missed a medal by one second to finish 11th in 25:34. Delaney McAfee (27:02) Dulce Dunham (27:30) and Kiara Martin (30:49) also competed for the Outlaws.

“Many of the coaches are facing lower participation rates since COVID, and anticipate a rebound in numbers next year,” said Kanzig. “I am thankful our boys’ team is healthy in size and I know the girls’ team will continue to grow again.”

The Outlaws will host a 14-team home meet at Big Meadow Golf Course at Black Butte Ranch on Thursday, October 14 starting at 3 p.m.


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