South Whidbey’s cross country runners are tough mudders. The Falcons hit the road for the Seaside 3 Course Challenge, which features a famous muddy water pit, and came home with more than a story to tell and clothes to clean.
Down in Seaside, Ore., the South Whidbey girls team finished in first place in its division of seven teams. Senior Lillianna Stelling led the way with an eighth-place finish on the 5,000-meter hard course. She finished in 24:55, a slower time than last year by 16 seconds, but the same placing. Fellow senior Nora Felt also ran the hard course, and she finished in 26:52.
Falcon girls who raced on the moderate course were paced by senior Bonnie Klamm (25:28), who improved her course time by more than two minutes. Anna Hood, a senior, wasn’t far behind and finished in 27:50. A pair of freshmen — Anna Justus (30:15) and Carson Orr (31:03) — took on the moderate course, too. Junior Caitlyn Workman raced the 5K at Seaside for the first time and finished in 36:45.
Four Falcons hit the 4,500-meter course. Freshman Mallorie Mitchem placed 13th in 20:09. Sophomore Emma Lungren stepped down from the 5K at last year’s Seaside 3 Course Challenge and finished in 21:27. Miya Springer, a freshman, finished in 24:58. First-year Falcon cross country runner Lisa Haufler crossed the finish line in 28:02.
Team points were determined by the top two places in each course — easy, moderate, hard. The South Whidbey girls team, which has been a top-10 ranked 1A team in a coaches poll all season, edged out Sisters by 18 points.
South Whidbey’s boys team finished sixth out of 13 teams. Sophomore Cole Zink headed the Falcon runners with a 44th-place finish on the hard course in 21:30. Zink improved his time by 1:40. He was joined by fellow sophomore Truman Hood (24:51).
On the moderate course, junior Gavin Imes stepped up from the easy course last year and finished the moderate course in 21:59. Freshman Chris Anderson set his Seaside time at 22:26. Sophomore Anders Bergquist improved his time by almost one minute and came in 22:52. Freshman Evan Mellish finished in 23:59.
South Whidbey’s only senior boy, Jhamil Bader-Jarvis, hit the easy course. Bader-Jarvis finished the 4,500-meter race in 17:31. A trio of sophomores came in after the senior, Andy Zisette (19:03), Anthony Kovic (19:16) and Garrett Poteat (19:42). Freshmen Jon Deritis (20:33) and Isaac Greene (26:20) rounded out the Falcons’ road-trip racers.