Crater shows top ranking is for real

PALO ALTO, Calif. — The Crater boys cross country team celebrated its ascension to the No. 1 ranking in the Pacific Northwest the only way it knows how: It won yet another high-profile meet.

Just days after the Class 5A Comets vaulted from No. 4 and leapfrogged the likes of Class 6A Portland teams Jesuit and Central Catholic in regional rankings, they won the big-school division of the Stanford Invitational on Saturday.

Crater scored 167 points to edge Rancho Buena Vista of San Diego by one point in the boys Seeded Division, the highest of six divisions in each of the boys and girls meets. Central Catholic placed sixth and Jesuit, a team the Comets had never beaten, finished ninth in the 23-team field.

Another Rogue Valley team, the St. Mary's girls, had a fine effort as well, winning the Division 5, or small-school, competition that had 16 teams. The Crusaders scored 83 points to the 91 of runner-up College of Prep of Oakland.

The Crater girls were 12th in the 22-team Seeded Division, and North Medford's girls were 18th in the 36-team Division 1.

The Crater boys were led by Zach Elliott, who finished 16th overall over 5,000 meters in 15:51. He was followed by teammates Josh Elliott (29th, 16:04), Ryan Santana (37th, 16:09), Jerrod Puckett (47th, 16:17) and Curtis Yungen (50th, 16:19).

"I just wanted us to be solid this week and see if we could beat some of the Oregon schools we'd never beaten before," said coach Justin Loftus of the Comets, whose previous high regional ranking was sixth a couple of years ago. "That (beating Jesuit) was a pretty good accomplishment for our team."

North Medford wasn't in the boys team competition, but Josh Paul placed 25th (15:58) and Drew Jordan 28th (16:02).

St. Mary's, which got 1-2 finishes from Mary Bennion and Morgan Martin last week in a Eugene meet, rode those two again to victory here. Bennion was third in 19:36 over 5,000 meters, and Martin was seventh in 20:00. Other Crusader runners who counted toward team points were Rebecca Tribelhorn (17th, 20:54), Emily Reeder (27th, 21:30) and Elise Marquart (38th, 22:18). Each ran a season-best time.

The Crater girls had four runners within 17 seconds: Riley Swanson (19:21), Laurie Stoutenburgh (19:34), Silver Siebert (19:37) and Kayleigh Tyerman (19:38).

For the North Medford girls, Davina Leyva clocked 21:09, Jennifer Zhu ran 21:11 and Jennifer Berry clocked 21:19.

NIKE PRE-NATIONALS — At Portland, Elliott Jantzer of Phoenix turned in a lifetime-best time of 15 minutes, 41 seconds to take fifth in the Jim Danner Championship boys race and lead a host of locals at Portland Meadows Golf Course.

Jantzer's effort was a PR by more than 20 seconds and established a new junior class record for Phoenix High.

Ashland's Aria Hemphill was the top local finisher in the Jim Danner Championship girls race, placing 26th in a time of 19:23. Teammate Camelia Mayfield was 76th in 20:12, followed by Seena Frantz (92nd, 20:31), Mya Kass (98th, 20:31) and Haley Beal (116th, 20:58) as the Grizzlies placed 15th as a team.

In the Division 1 boys race, Ashland's Matt Miner placed second at 16:04, with fellow Grizzly Wilder Schaaf 19th at 16:42. Ryland Karlovich (32nd, 16:57), Cord Walsh (61st, 17:18) and Noah Kass (89th, 17:30) rounded out the effort for Ashland, which placed fifth.

In the Division 1 girls race, South Medford's Piper Delaney was the top local finisher with an eighth-place time of 19:27. Her Panther teammates Kelsey Bradshaw, 15th in 19:56, and Tayler Harrington, 21st in 20:02, were not far behind.

Phoenix's Anne Hagy placed 23rd in the race (20:09), followed by teammates Jordi Hurd (37th, 20:21), Kayla Heath (57th, 20:42) and Sarah Hagy, who established a new freshman class record by going 20:53 to finish 64th overall.

Riley Morgan (82nd, 21:29) and Paige Granger (112th, 22:39) rounded out the scorers for South Medford, with Adrianne Engle (121st, 25:07) also scoring for Phoenix. South finished ninth as a team, with Phoenix in 14th place.

In the Division 2 boys race, South Medford's Joey Nelson posted the top effort with a 12th-best time of 17:03. Also scoring for the Panthers were Christian Welsh (75th, 18:31), Wes Miller (83rd, 18:42), Steven Lines (90th, 18:54) and Logan Taylor (102nd, 19:23).

Dan Engle paced Phoenix with a time of 17:19 to finish 21st, followed by teammates Zach Hibbs (51st, 17:58), Conrad Hulen (62nd, 18:16), Graham Thirkill (82nd, 18:37) and Ben Ward (110th, 20:01).

Phoenix finished 12th as a team, with South Medford in 14th place.

The rain-soaked course held up well despite competition in 18 different races featuring about 1,800 athletes.

CHIEFTAIN INVITATIONAL — At Rogue River, the Hidden Valley boys placed three runners in the top 10 and six in the top 25 to win the 5,000-meter event.

Hidden Valley's Connor Kasler was second in 16:12, Andrew Watson fifth in 16:49 and Jason Arbour seventh in 16:55.

Crater took third place, paced by Zane Stevens in 12th place in 17:23.

New Hope Christian's Jacob Bowdoin won the boys race in 16:07.

Crater's girls were second behind McKay of Salem. Anya Martinez (21:10) and Lindsey Bascom (21:27) were ninth and 10th for the Comets, and Grace Gamble placed 12th in 21:35.

Ally Manley of Brookings-Harbor paced the girls with a time of 19:13.

Saturday's Results


TEAM SCORES — Hidden Valley 47, McKay 78, Crater 102, Brookings 141, Mazama 164, Triad Christian 177, Rogue River 192, New Hope Christian 195, Cascade Christian 201, St. Mary's 203, Eagle Point 318, Illinois Valley Inc., Glendale Inc., Days Creek Inc., Canyonville Christian Inc., Hosanna Christian Inc.

TOP 25 INDIVIDUALS — 1, Jacob Bowdoin, NHC, 16:07; 2, Connor Kasler, HV, 16:12; 3, Cole Watson, RR, 16:25; 4, Thomas Goodwin, McKay, 16:43; 5, Andrew Watson, HV, 16:49; 6, Eli Cunningham, NHC, 16:53; 7, Jason Arbour, HV, 16:55; 8, Shawn Elliott, TC, 17:06; 9, Zach Jabin, McKay, 17:15; 10, Andrew Daw, Maz., 17:16;

11, Willie Bennett, BH, 17:18; 12, Zane Stevens, C, 17:23; 13, Kirby Garlitz, Maz., 17:25; 14, Chris Cline, HV, 17:28; 15, Alex Miller, C, 17:34; 16, Juan Cruz, McKay, 17:36; 17, Greyson Dixson, C, 17:37.34; 18, Caleb Aguiar, TC, 17:37.76; 19, Earl Brown, HV, 17:38; 20, Linden Loren, BH, 17:45;

21, Leo Reyes, McKay, 17:48.24; 22, Chris Neighbor, BH, 17:48.92; 23, Lewis Kerwin, SM, 17:51; 24, Chase Estep, HV, 17:57; 25, Alec Rosenthal, BH, 18:07.


TEAM SCORES — McKay 53, Crater 72, Brookings 95, Hidden Valley 96, Mazama 128, Illinois Valley 129, Triad Christian 137, Glendale Inc., New Hope Christian Inc.

TOP 25 INDIVIDUALS — 1, Ally Manley, BH, 19:13; 2, Nika Payne, NHC, 19:33; 3, Janelle Everetts, McKay, 19:46; 4, Alyssa Watson, HV, 19:49; 5, Megan Everetts, McKay, 20:39; 6, Rachael Estabrook, TC, 20:51; 7, Jamie Richardson, HV, 20:52; 8, Steffani White, McKay, 21:07; 9, Anya Martinez, C, 21:10; 10, Lindsey Bascom, C, 21:27;

11, Courtney Miller, HV, 21:33; 12, Grace Gamble, C, 21:35; 13, Sara Nelson, Maz., 21:38; 14, Sarah Jabin, McKay, 21:39; 15, Julianne Shepard, G, 21:49; 16, Amy Axel, BH, 21:55; 17, Lucero Castenada, C, 21:57; 18, Casey Robertson, IV, 22:02.58; 19, McKenzie Yeoman, IV, 22:02.86; 20, Nicole Ledford, BH, 22:17;

21, Gabriela Franco-Arizola, Maz., 22:17; 22, Erin Kroeker, TC, 22:40; 23, Diana Salazar, McKay, 22:58; 24, Taylor Nelson, C, 23:05; 25, Stephanie Kersten, Maz., 23:10.

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