By David Krueger Herald Writer
PASCO — A couple local cross country teams looked to make a fashion statement at Saturday’s WIAA state cross country meet in Pasco.
Some went blonde. Others went with mohawks.
The Lake Stevens and Kamiak boys teams dyed and buzzed their hair to continue school traditions at the final high school meet of the year.
The Vikings have been bleaching their hair for decades. Probably.
“It’s been a tradition at our school for the last 40 years,” said Lake Stevens senior Mason Nicol, who was the Vikings’ top finisher at 23rd overall. “When a (cross-country) team goes to state, that’s what you do.”
Ld by Nicol, the bleached Vikings finished 13th as a team, right behind Kamiak and its Mohawks in 12th.
The Knights, meanwhile, prefer a slightly shorter look. At least on the sides.
“They did that last year,” said Kamiak head coach Charley LeWarne. “(Senior) Joey Davis has some clippers. Off went the hair. I don’t know if it’s a tradition after two years.”
The Kamiak runners maintain it is. It’s a tradition that is a bit less storied, albeit much more specific.
“We buzz them on Thursday night when we get in,” Davis said. “We go to the bathroom at the Red Lion Inn in Richland, room 148.”
“It’s a state ritual,” added fellow senior Ryan Bradford, Kamiak’s top finisher in 39th place.
Both Wesco teams finished behind Jackson, which took seventh-place overall. The Timberwolves,
which didn’t appear to have any hair-related tradition, got a sixth-place finish by sophomore Aaron Roe in a time of 15 minutes, 35.7 seconds. Jadon Olson also finished 21st, earning 12 points for the Timberwolves.
The Knights were hoping to post a higher finish at the state tournament, but after the race the team huddled together to support each other — physically and emotionally.
“We’re a family,” Davis, one of five key seniors on the Knights’ squad, said. “We’ll always be there. I love these guys so much.”
“I love you more,” Knights’ runner Kash Goudarzi quickly chimed in.
The Oak Harbor boys cross country team accomplished its season-long goal last weekend when it won its second consecutive district championship.
The fact that the Wildcats got to run in their third state tournament in a row was just an added bonus.
“We mainly focused on last week, being district champs,” Oak Harbor head coach Eric Peterson said. “That was our goal. So this is kind of like icing on the cake.”
The Wildcats got strong performances from a couple of younger runners, including junior Clayton Richardson (48th overall) and sophomore John Rodeheffer (61st) in what Peterson calls a “tough, competitive” 3A field. Peterson thinks that getting experience for their young runners will only help Oak Harbor continue to work its way to the top in the future.
“You go through and you experience the big races,” Peterson said. “It’s something our younger guys are finding out. They ran well today but I think next year they’re going to come back so much more prepared and ready to go.
“… We only graduate one out of our top five, so we’re hoping to do some damage next year too.”
The Glacier Peak boys, whose female counterparts won the 3A state title, finished 14th. Oak Harbor and Glacier Peak are ranked Nos. 7 and 8 in the state respectively.
Cedarcrest’s Logan Orndorf, the lone Red Wolf in the boys’ 2A race, finished 10th overall with a time of 15:52.8.
The King’s team placed fourth overall in 1A. The Knights were paced by sophomore Andrew Ayers who was the seventh runner to cross the finish line in 16:21.9.
At Sun Willows Golf Course, Pasco
Team scores—1. Charles Wright Academy 87. Local results: 4. King’s 113.
Individual results—Winner: Dillon Quintana (Mt. Baker) 15:50.0. Local finishers: 4. Kyle Cole (Cedar Park Christian) 16:10.8; 7. Andrew Ayers (King’s) 16:21.9; 22. Hunter Bryson (K) 17:06.4; 31. Logan Griffis (K) 17:12.8; 43. Arthur Emmons (K) 17:23.2; 54. Cole Zink (South Whidbey) 17:30.7; 63. Jake Barnett (K) 17:36.2; 81. Blake Smith (K) 17:57.5; Tyler Ward (K) 17:58.0.
Team scores—Winner: Sehome 81. Local results: None
Individual results—Winner: Patrick Gibson (Squalicum) 15:13.6. Local finishers: 10. Logan Orndorf (Cedarcrest) 15:52.8; 29. Douglas Davis (Lakewood) 16:30.7.
Team scores—Winner: North Central 38. Local results: 10. Oak Harbor 284; 12. Shorewood 324; 14. Glacier Peak 352.
Individual results—Winner: 1. Joe Hardy (Seattle Prep) 15:18.4. Local finishers: 17. Carter Osborne (Shorecrest) 15:56.3; 36. Keenan Stephens (Shorewood) 16:26.9; 38. Jack Pearce (Mountlake Terrace) 16:28.6; 48. Clayton Richardson (Oak Harbor) 16:41.3; 49. Dominic Giordano (Meadowdale) 16:41.6; 51. Keagan Smith (Glacier Peak) 16:42.2; 61. John Rodeheffer (OH) 16:48.7; 75. Jason Salas (OH) 17:02.2; 78. Omar Abdulla (SW) 17:06.6; 88. Andrew Christianson (SW) 17:16.3; 90. Gavin Stewart (OH) 17:17.5; 94. Tanner Nieman (Stan) 17:20.1; 98. Zach Smith (GP) 17:26.2; 100. Michael Matwichuk (GP) 17:26.7; 106. Andrew Thomas (GP) 17:33.6; 107. Michael Sutherland (SW) 17:34.6; 111. Alexander Krantz (OH) 17:38.3; 114. Nathan Wagner (OH) 17:40.3; 115. Patrick Mayer (OH) 17:41.3; 117. Cody Hoskins (Stan) 17:43.1; 119. James Horne (GP) 17:44.1; 124. Isaac Ripley (GP) 17:48.4; 125. Thomas Miller (SW) 17:49.1; 131. Blake Forkey (GP) 18:01.8; 139. John Ehni (SW) 18:23.0.
Team scores—Winner: Central Valley 89. Local results: 7. Jackson 180; 12. Kamiak 269; 13. Lake Stevens 284.
Individuals results—Winner: Andrew Gardner (Mead) 15:02.3. Local finishers: 6. Aaron Roe 15:35.7 (Jackson); 16. Jack Griffing (Edmonds-Woodway) 15:48.8; 21. Jadon Olson (J) 15:54.3; 23. Mason Nicol (Lake Stevens) 15:56.2; 39. Ryan Bradford (Kamiak) 16:16.0; 44. Brad Hodkinson (Snohomish) 16:17.5; 46. Jerry Behrens (K) 16:18.4; 54. Ryan Fairhurst (S) 16:23.3; 61. Alex Mitchell (Mount Vernon) 16:26.8; 62. Brandon Brown (J) 16:27.4; 82. Colin Wiedmer (Cascade) 16:44.2; 90. Caleb Mina (LS) 16:48.9; 91. Scott Schmitt (LS) 16:50.3; 93. Clark Sterling (J) 16:51.2; 96. Tomislav Smith (K) 16:52.1; 100. Jack Thompson (J) 16:55.4; 104. Jackson Carter (K) 16:58.3; 106. Zach Bush (LS) 17:02.0; 108. Chase Weholt (J) 17:02.6; 121. David Castillo (LS) 17:15.7; 128. Ben Halladay (K) 17:31.5; 130. Conner Hayes (J) 17:33.6; 132. Austin Hughes (LS) 17:35.2; 134. Jeff Lozensky (LS) 17:37.3; 136. Kash Goudarzi (K) 17:44.3.