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MHC CROSS COUNTRY: Sandy's Tyler Callaway wins race against league's elite team

PMG PHOTO: DAVID BALL - Sandys Tyler Callaway manages a tight turn at the lead of a pack early in Wednesdays race.

Sandy senior Tyler Callaway settled in behind a pack of Central Catholic runners through the first half of last week's league race before leaving them in the dust over the final mile.

"I wanted to use them to break up some of that headwind, but the second time around the course I noticed them working a little harder, and I made my move," Callaway said.

He surged into the lead coming around a sharp turn that led back onto a short stretch of the David Douglas High School track before zipping across a blocked off Portland street and doing a couple laps around a city park where he raced out of sight of the chase group.

Callaway returned to the track for one finishing lap, getting all the way around the first turn while the Central runners were still coming across the street. Callaway won in 16:07.15.

"We put in a lot of speed work this week, and I tried to keep pushing," Callaway said. "I find I am more motivated when I'm the one everyone is chasing."

Sandy teammate Jeret Gillingham finished fifth overall in 16:46.59, while Tayler Kellim was 11th in 17:38.17.

Central Catholic saw its full varsity seven come through in the top-10 spots to claim the team dual against Sandy by 17 points. The Pioneers edged host David Douglas by four points, securing the victory over the Scots when No. 4 racer Zachary Taylor beat Douglas' final counting runner through the line by about 10 strides.

PMG PHOTO: DAVID BALL - Sandys Souvanny Carpenter (789) looks to keep pace with Central Catholics Amare Christensen coming out of a first loop around the park during a league meet at David Douglas on Wednesday.

In the girls race, Sandy's Souvanny Carpenter ran alongside Central's Amara Christensen in second place for most of the race. Christensen put on a late surge to overtake Columbia Christian's Makena Houston for the win in 20:38.07, while Carpenter came through the finish line in fourth place in 21:27.42.

Central Catholic swept the team duals, while Sandy picked up an automatic win over David Douglas, which was two racers short of a full team.

Sandy races against fellow state contenders Barlow and Clackamas at Pier Park today (Wednesday, Oct. 23) before hosting the Mount Hood Conference championships on Oct. 30.

"It all depends on who shows up on that given day, but we'll be ready to go," Callaway said.

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This story is slated for our Oct. 23, print edition.

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