South Whidbey cross country opens season at short courses

South Whidbey’s cross country runners warmed up for the season with a couple of short races, at least compared to the 5,000-meter courses they’ll run the rest of the year.

Leading the way for the Falcons were the girls who claimed two top-10 spots at the Cascade Conference Preview 3,000-meter race Sept. 11. Sophomore Mallorie Mitchem, the top returning runner from last year, finished eighth overall in 12:13.8. Jaime Rodden, a senior newcomer this year, was close behind in 12:16.4 at ninth place.

Freshman Anna Leski finished in 12th place in 12:22.5. Another newcomer senior, Terra Wildon, placed 19th in 12:43.9. The fifth finisher for the Falcon girls was junior Emma Lungren, who placed 22nd in 12:51.2.

South Whidbey’s boys runners finished outside the top-20 with senior Gavin Imes taking the top place at 24th in 10:40. Truman Hood, a junior, was the second South Whidbey boy to finish in 11:08.9. Freshman Will Simms was close behind in 11:09.2.

A trio of Falcons finished in 47th, 48th and 49th places. Freshman Justin Gonzales cruised the Lakewood High School course in 11:28.5. South Whidbey’s top returning runner, junior Cole Zink, finished in 11:30.4 and barely beat teammate sophomore Evan Mellish’s 11:30.5 time.

South Whidbey’s other girl runners: Bethany Justus (13:39.7); Riley Yale (13:40.5); Kinsey Eager (13:50.5); Anna Justus (15:42.6); Bailey Forsyth (17:04.2); Clara Martin (17:07.4); and Caitlyn Workman (18:07.4).

South Whidbey’s other boy runners: Cory Ackerman (11:32.1); Anders Bergquist (11:34.3); Anthony Kovic (11:49.5); Will Holbert (12:22.2); Zach Ramsey (13:27.2); Caleb Bartel (13:54); and Isaac Greene (20:25.7).

At the Sehome Invitational on Sept. 14 in Bellingham, Mitchem claimed the best finish among her teammates. The sophomore placed seventh in the sophomore girls 2-mile race in 13:14.

Leski placed eighth in the freshman race in 13:12.

On the boys team, Simms had the best place at 16th in the freshman boys race in 11:50. The best Falcon boys’ time, however, belonged to Zink in 11:39.

South Whidbey hosts its only regular season meet of the year Saturday, Sept. 21 for the South Whidbey Invitational.

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