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O'Neil gets individual win as Canby hosts cross country on campus and sees nuggets of success

Tommy O'Neil got this new-look cross country season off to a good start for the Canby Cougars, snagging an individual win during the three-way meet on the Canby High campus March 3.

"The meet went well, our kids got to run for the first time in a year-and-a-half," said Canby coach Tom Millbrooke.

O'Neil traversed the 5,000-meter course in 17 minutes, 37.8 seconds to outlast a pair of West Linn runners to the finish line.

"Tommy and Joel figured to be our top runners early on and they both ran well," Millbrooke said. "Tommy was able to run that guy down at the end and win it."

COURTESY PHOTO: BOB WEBBER - Ashley Peterson finished second in the girls varsity race March 3 at Canby High School in her first cross country race ever.

The individual win was accompanied by several other strong runs from the Cougars, which propelled them to a team win with 29 points, bettering West Linn (43) and Oregon City (51) for the team win.

Joel Ibarra got his season off to a good start, clocking a time of 18:10.1, good enough for a fourth-place finish. He was followed across the line by Oliver Maddox (sixth, 18:35.5), Matthew Dewar (eighth, 18:46.2), Jared Moon (10th, 18:50.2) for Canby's scorers.

"We've got some young guys who have some ability, but aren't quite in shape yet. They ran awful well for their first races in a long time," Millbrooke said.

On the girls side, the Cougars weren't able to field a scoring team, but had a pair of promising performances from Ashley Peterson and Kaitlyn Doman.

Peterson was second in the individual race, clocking a time of 21:55.7 over 5,000 meters. She was trailed in third place by Doman, who turned in a time of 22:15.3.

"That was Ashley's first cross country race ever and she ran an excellent race," Millbrooke said. "Doman ran for us previously, but she really stepped it up and competed very well."

Canby will hit the trails again Wednesday, March 10, in a three-way meet at Tualatin.

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