Distance runners throughout the region will head east of the mountains this weekend, having earned the right to participate in the state cross country championships.
Competitors from all classifications will gather in Pasco Saturday at Sun Willows Golf Course, the now-traditional site for the season finale.
Local runners earned their state berths during last Saturday’s Westside Classic at Chambers Bay. The meet qualified both teams and individuals for the state extravaganza. Here’s a look at how local programs will be represented at the state meet.
The Hornet girls placed fifth overall, so the entire team will be making a state run. The top individual finisher was Makayla Melcher, who placed 13th in a field of 122 runners; she will be joined at state by Camryn Berryhill, Hannah Swettenam, Natalie Franco, Claire Lowe, Kelsee Gould, Emily Derrick, Jessica Taylor and Rachel Franco.
The White River boys placed 10th as a team.
Individually, Joel Slominski finished 12th to pace the White River crew, the only Hornet boy to land a spot at state. He was joined by teammates Noah Ashley, Sam Cochran, Emery Riendeau, Grant Swettenam, Tanner Holmes and Will Stern.
The entire EHS boys team advanced to the Class 4A state meet courtesy of a seventh-place finish at Chambers Bay. In the 4A ranks, the top seven teams move along to state.
Making the state trip will be Sam Lingwall, Alec Ritter, Teagan Eldridge, Kyle Revell, Foster Barnhart, Dominic Deady and Hunter McGowan. Lingwall was the team’s top finisher, placing 17th overall.
Aside from teams, the state meet takes the top 49 finishers that are not part of qualifying teams. That means two members of the EHS girls team, Hunter Storm and Payton Roberson, will be making a state trip. Storm finished seventh and Roberson was 22nd in the Westside Classic field.
Other EHS girls competing at Chambers Bay were Anna Bursch, Natasha Puzon, Alex Puzon, Seley Nemish and Piper Laymen.
The Enumclaw girls finished 11th in a 20-team field.
The Sumner High boys placed 11th at the Westside Classic.
Individually, the top finisher was Dash Penney, who crossed the line 26th. He was joined in the race by fellow Spartans Matthew Holme, Adam Sjolund, Ethan Roach, Parker Lund, Carson Taylor and Christian Davison.
Penney, Holme and Sjolund – by virtue of their individual placing – earned a spot in the state meet.
The Spartan girls closed out their season at the Westside Classic. Representing the program at Chambers Bay were McKenna Wilson and Leah Duff.
The Panther boys placed 12th at Chambers Bay.
The team’s top finisher was Cayan Dibble, who placed 22nd with a time of 17:15. Other Panther runners were Nolan Gain, Colton Graham, Max Lea, Jacob Schlosser, Billy Rohrbough and Fisher Pierre.
Advancing to state are Dibble and Gain, who placed 25th.
In the Class 3A girls race, Bonney Lake was 16th.
The first Panther girls across the line was Jasmin Ochoa. She was joined by Jessica Day, Madison Lewis, Tyra Lindula, Meredith Graham, Jax Wetteland and Madelyn Mitchell.