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Crook County packs most of their varsity runners in close proximity helping team to high places at meet

LON AUSTIN/CENTRAL OREGONIAN - Cade Catterson leads a pack of runners midway through the race on Friday. Alex Vail, who finished ahead of Catterson is right behind.Crook County had another strong showing on the cross country course on Friday.

This time at the Oxford Classics, which was held Friday afternoon at Drake Park in Bend.

The Cowboys finished in fifth place in the 18-team race, which featured several of the top Class 5A and 6A teams in the state, as well as teams from as far away as Idaho.

The Cowgirls also had an outstanding day, placing seventh in the 17-team girls race.

"They all ran awesome," said Crook County assistant coach Chuck Coats.

The Cowboys were led by junior Alec Carne, who finished 11th overall with a time of 16:56.69.

Junior Alex Vail and senior Cade Catterson were close behind, finishing in times of 17:15.33 and 17:17.46, respectively.

Catterson ran his time despite not feeling well prior to the start of the race.

"I don't know if he has the bug that is going around or what it is, but he didn't feel good," Coats said. "So I'm happy with all of them."

The Cowboys' fourth runner, senior Zach Mauras, wasn't far behind, finishing 33rd overall with a time of 17:33.44.

"I think our first four with Alex, Cade, Zach and I all ran really good," Carne said. "They all did really good considering how tough this course was."

Unfortunately there was a big gap between the first four Cowboys and their fifth and final scorer.

Sophomore Van Williams finished 71st overall with a time of 18:48.70, to round out the Cowboys scoring.

LON AUSTIN/CENTRAL OREGONIAN - Alec Carne nears the finish line. Carne finished 11th overall in the 18-team race.However, Coats was pleased with that time as well. Williams has been battling a minor leg injury and Coats expects his times to come down as he gets healthier.

"He has had leg issues the last couple of weeks, so he will be back up there," Coats said. "I can see Van dropping back down there into the 17s.

A time even in the high 17 minute range would have moved the Cowboys up to fourth and a time of 17:30 would have moved Crook County all the way to third place.

"It's going to be really big once it comes down to districts," Carne said of the Cowboys having a strong fifth runner. "Because it's all in the grouping. If you have a top four, but our fifth guy is kind of way out then your chances go down quite a bit to go to state."

Also running in the varsity race for the Cowboys were Austin Strong, who placed 120th with a time of 21:10.87, and Daniel Olson, who was 123rd in 21:54.85.

Although he ran in the JV race, Xavier Layne also had a solid race, finishing with a time of 20:33.24 to move up to the Cowboy varsity squad for the next race.

Other Cowboys competing in the JV race included Gabe Rothenbucher, 23:37.83, and Azuriah Becker, 24:46.54.

Ahsland's Reed Pryor won the race with a time of 15:56.06. Bend's Bennet Jackson finished second with a time of 16:08.23.

Summit packed their runners together in a tight pack to take the team title, scoring 66 points to 84 for Ashland. Ridgevue, Idaho, finished in third with 84 points, while Sisters was fourth, 144, and Crook County fifth with 152 points.

Rounding out the top 10 were South Medford, 161, Bend, 165, Mountain View, 193, North Medford, 203, and Klamath Union, 234.

The girls race was also won by Summit, which had a nearly perfect score.

The Storm finished in five of the top seven places as they scored just 16 points as a team.

LON AUSTIN/CENTRAL OREGONIAN - Savannah Jessee, 235, races up a hill in front of a pack of runners at the Oxford Classics Invitational, which was held on Friday at Drake Park in Bend. Bend was a distant second with 95 points, while North Medford was third, 137, Cleveland fourth, 155, South Medford fifth, 195, Mountain View sixth, 197, and the Cowgirls seventh, 214. Rounding out the top 10 were Ashland, 224, Klamath Union, 253 and Sisters, 274.

Summit's Fiona Max easily won the girls race with a time of 18:00.63. Teammate Teaghan Knox was second in 18:20.38, while Ridgeviue's Alexia Corona was third in 18:36.95.

Crook County was led by senior Jan Carne, who placed 16th overall with a time of 20:16.72.

Freshman Savannah Jessee was next in for the Cowgirls, placing 29th with a time of 21:18.36.

"I feel like I did really good," Jessee said. "I have never raced against people this good and it was amazing. I'm pretty pleased with how the team did. We have all trained really hard together and it's nice to have them all run so close to each other. It was just a great day and I'm really happy that God blessed me with this race and this opportunity."

Running third for the Cowgirls was sophomore McCall Woodward, who finished in 46th place with a time of 21:54.71.

Rounding out the scoring for the Cowgirls were Kelcie Ames, 68th in 22:50.58, and Lindsey Mode, 69th with a time of 22:55.76.

"If you look at the girls' times we had basically seven girls all right there together," Coats said. "They ran really good. I'm happy with all of them, but Kelcie ran really well today."

Also running in the varsity race for Crook County were Kennedy Larson, who finished in 76th place with a time of 23:15.63, and Maggie Ramoss, who placed 84th with a time of 23:35.59.

Like in the boys race, one of the Cowgirls who ran JV ran fast enough to move up to the varsity squad for the next meet.

Freshman Anne Carne finished ninth in the girls JV race with a time of 23:17.91.

Other Cowgirls in the JV race included Elise Rice, 24:20.86, and Sammy Thornton, 31:21.99.

Crook County is not scheduled to run again until Wednesday, Oct. 16, when they compete in the Central Oregon XC Relays, which start at 3 p.m. at the Bend Pine Nursery.

The team is back in action again at the Warner Pacific XC Classic, which will be held on Saturday, Oct. 19 at Lents Park in Portland.

That will be the final race of the year prior to the Intermountain Conference Championships, which will be held Thursday, Oct. 31 at Sorosis Park near The Dalles.


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