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2022 Rangers girls led by senior Heather Shaver; youthful boys look to build program

PMG FILE PHOTO - Senior Heather Shaver is eyeing a third individual trophy as Estacada cross country runs into the new season. Estacada girls cross country is running for the triple-crown.

The squadron of talented runners have won the Tri-Valley District title two seasons in a row, and despite losing some stars to graduation, all eyes will be on the hunt for that third trophy. And adding to the difficult is the arrival of two new premier programs to the league — Crook County and The Dalles.

The group is led by senior Heather Shaver, a decorated Ranger athlete who claimed the 2020 and 2022 Tri-Valley Conference individual championships.

"(Heather) works very hard, so I expect her to be in the hunt for the individual title," said Coach Jonathan Erickson.

Joining Shaver is junior Scottie Weiler, who placed fourth last season at districts in her debut season as a cross country runner. Now with more experience under her belt, the expectation is for Weiler to pace her teammate, creating a high-scoring one-two duo for the Rangers.

On the boys side the Rangers are young, with five freshman runners and only two returning upperclassmen. The lone state participant last season was senior Lliam Baird, who finished second at districts.

"He is a flat-out strong runner who learned some hard lessons throughout the season about how to run cross country races," Erickson said. "By the end of the season he was solidly staying in the front packs."

Baird will lead the youth movement with a more tactical focus, eying a top-half team performance in the conference.

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