PASCO — Different uniform. Same result.
After winning the same race last year as a member of Kamiak’s cross country team, Lake Stevens sophomore Taylor Roe cruised to her second consecutive Class 4A state title Saturday on the 5,000-meter course at Sun Willows Golf Course.
“It feels amazing,” Roe said. “I’m just so grateful for what God has given me and this ability to come out and race today.”
Roe dominated from the start, posting a winning time of 17 minutes, 34.1 seconds that was nearly 20 seconds faster than her closest competitor. She bettered last year’s winning time by 22 seconds and fell just 12.5 seconds shy of her personal record, which she set in last month’s Hole in the Wall Invitational in Lakewood.
“She’s earned it,” Lake Stevens co-head coach Stuart Chaffee said. “She works her tail off every day. She’s the hardest-working kid on our team and she’s super disciplined. So for her to come over here and get rewarded like this is really exciting to see.”
Roe, who moved with her family to the Lake Stevens area last winter, was a junior national champion in both sixth grade and eighth grade. But the sophomore sensation said she never expected to attain this much success so early in her high school career.
“I didn’t think I was going to win the state title coming into my freshman year,” Roe said. “It was a complete shock. I never thought I would progress to that. To win it last year just built my confidence for this year. I knew my goal was to (win) by the end of high school … but I never thought it would be this way.”
Glacier Peak was the top local 4A team, earning third place with 122 points. The Grizzlies were led by senior Natalie Church, who placed 17th in 18:55.0.
Four Edmonds-Woodway runners earned podium finishes in the 3A race as the Warriors took second place with 104 points, behind state champion Holy Names Academy (53 points). E-W junior Yukino Parle led the way with a seventh-place finish (18:38.1), followed by sophomore Olivia Meader-Yetter in eighth place (18:41.8), senior Sydney Boland in 12th (18:55.4) and sophomore Stephanie Wroblewski in 15th (19:03.2).
The Warriors’ second-place finish was particularly impressive given that they were without their No. 5 runner, sophomore Kaitlynn Rust, who suffered an injury last month.
“They were brilliant, absolutely brilliant,” E-W head coach Alan Bonney said. “When we lost our normal No. 5, we knew that was going to hurt us. But they came through. To put four on the podium is absolutely amazing. That was pretty impressive.”
Lynnwood senior Malia Pivec capped her career with a second consecutive 3A top-10 state finish, claiming sixth place in 18:29.9. “I executed my race plan — to go out quick and try to hang on to the chase pack,” she said.
Pivec finished one spot ahead of E-W’s Parle, who she refers to as a friendly rival. Parle edged Pivec for first place in last week’s District 1 championships and in the 3200-meter race at last spring’s state track championships. This time, it was Pivec who crossed the line in front.
“Edmonds has a really strong team and she’s usually the front-runner for them,” Pivec said. “She finishes really well, so part of my race plan was to try to beat her.”
Shorecrest took third place among 3A teams with 136 points. The Scots were led by sophomore Lillian Visser, who placed 14th in 19:02.2.
Mountlake Terrace senior Katherine Gustafson was the top local finisher in the 2A race, earning 22nd place in 19:51.3. She crossed the line 0.2 seconds ahead of Cedarcrest junior Alicia Krivanek.
King’s placed ninth among 1A teams with 256 points. Freshman Jenae McInnes led the Knights with a 40th-place finish in 20:43.8.