Husky boys second in cross-country at Cascade

After three weeks of practice, the Sweet Home cross-country teams got a chance to test their mettle at their season-opening meet Thursday, Sept. 10, at the Cascade Invitational.

Though the highest finisher for the varsity boys was senior Byron Sanders, who was 14th in the 86-runner field, representing 15 schools on the 5,000-meter course, the Huskies placed second as a team by virtue of the fact they placed their other four scoring runners within the next 21 spots.

“That really surprised me,” said Coach Billy Snow of the boys’ team finish. “Especially since we were missing three or four guys who will run at the top for us,” referring particularly to Casey Keys and Jake Comstock, who didn’t run with the varsity due to injuries. “It was fun to see those guys do that in a group, because we didn’t have anybody in the top 12.”

Woodburn won the boys team competition with 62 points, placing three runners in the top 10. Cross-country is scored by adding together the places of the first five finishers from each team, with the low total score winning. Sanders, who ran 18:23 on the flat, fast 5,000-meter course, was followed by Nick Hall (18th, 18:32), Avery Shamek (23rd, 18:48), Kyle Hummer (25th, 18:52), Chris Thompson (35th, 19:26), Lorenzo Virgen (38th, 19:38) and Joe Stroud (52nd, 20:47), giving the Huskies 115 points.

Philomath was third with 119, including the first-place finisher, Jeff Schreiner-McGraw (16:52); followed by Kennedy (122, Cascade (128) and Central (139).

The varsity girls were fifth overall with five runners in the race, including one who got confused and took a detour before getting back on the course. Their finish was largely due to the second- and fourth-place finishes by juniors Carissa Swanson (20:50) and Olivia Johnson (21:02).

“I wasn’t surprised to see Olivia and Carissa up front,” Snow said. “For our girls, that’ll be our strength having those two out there. What the rest of the pack does will be interesting.”

The other three finishers for the Huskies were Jenna Kistner (33rd, 25:29), Caroline Amendola (38th, 25:46) and Natasha Perry (45th, 27:32).

Cascade won the girls race with 67 points, followed by Central (69) and Philomath (77), who had the individual winner in junior Annette Marinello, a transfer from Corvallis, who finished far ahead of the rest of the field in 19:22. Stayton was fourth with 109, and the Huskies finished in fifth with 122.

Snow ran six girls in the junior varsity race, as all were new to cross-country this year or were returning from a year off. They combined for a team win in that event, behind freshman Paige Sanders who finished ninth in the 3,000-meter race in 14:32.

“They ran JV to get their feet wet,” Snow said. “Some will move up to varsity.”

Also, Snow’s daughter Jessica was playing with the soccer team in its 4-2 victory over Stayton and couldn’t run with the cross-country team in Thursday’s race. Her presence would likely have boosted Sweet Home’s finish in the team competition.

The JV girls won the race with 96 points, followed by Woodburn (97), Philomath (99), and Regis and Cascade (126).

The JV boys, led by freshman Daniel Danforth’s 13th-place finish in 11:57 over the 3,000-meter course, were third.

Sweet Home’s next two meets are the closest to home the Huskies will have this season. On Thursday, Sept. 17, they will run at Waterloo Park in the Lebanon Invitational and then will be at Camp Tadmor to host their own invitational meet at 4 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 22.

Boys Varsity Top 10 and Sweet Home finishers (5000 Meters)

(1) Jeff Schreiner-McGraw (Philomath) 16:52; (2) Brad Prettyman (Estacada) 17:20; (3) Josh Slate (Cascade) 17:27; (4) Leonel Jines (Kennedy) 17:29; (5) Jeremiah Koellmann (Stayton) 17:30; (6) Quinn Lindley (Central) 17:47; (7) Michael Mallon (Woodburn) 17:52; (8) N/A; (9) Bertin Cortes (Woodburn) 17:56; (10) Javier Cortes (Woodburn) 17:58; (14) Byron Sanders (SH) 18:23; (18) Nick Hall (SH) 18:32; (23) Avery Shamek (SH) 18:48; (25) Kyle Hummer 18:52; (35) Chris Thompson (SH) 19:26; (38) Lorenzo Virgen 19:38; (52) Joe Stroud 20:47.

Girls Varsity Top 10 and Sweet Home finishers (5000 Meters)

(1) Annette Marinello (Philomath) 19:22; (2) Carissa Swanson (SH) 20:50; (3) Alexis Mitzel (Cascade) 21:00; (4) Olivia Johnson (SH) 21:02; (5) Jordan Huffman (Central) 21:19; (6) Helen Adamson (Estacada) 21:4; (7) Bridget Donohue (Kennedy) 21:55; (8) Emily Everetts (Cascade) 22:25; (9) Carissa Hill (Stayton) 22:39; (10) Audrey Hellesto (Philomath) 22:53; (33) Jenna Kistner (SH) 25:29; (38) Caroline Amendola (SH) 25:46; (45) Natasha Perry (SH) 27:32.

Boys JV Sweet Home Finishers (3000 M)

(13) Daniel Danforth 11:57; (15) Nene Mauer 12:05; (18) Jacob Miner 12:26; (23) Brett King 12:41; (26) David Rinehart 12:55; (29) Jason Rice 12:59; (38) Anson Davis 13:32; (69) Mitchell Garcia 20:40.

Girls JV Sweet Home Finishers (3000 M)

(9) Paige Sanders 14:32; (13) Kimber Swanson 15:17; (21) Emily Egbert 15:56; (25) Liz Egbert 16:06; (28) Erin Rose 16:24; (41) Taylar Rodgers 18:41.