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Cats, Oekerman kick off Metro race in style


Westview goes 2-0 last week and Beavertons Oekerman wins big

HILLSBORO — It’s been six long weeks since the start of the 2012 cross country season, but the Metro League finally got down to business last week.

by: MILES VANCE - ALL ALONE - Beaverton senior Dan Oekerman speeds down a path at Rood Bridge Park during last weeks Metro League cross country opener. Oekerman ran to victory in the 5-kilometer race with a finishig time of 16 minutes, 8.53 seconds.

Westview, Beaverton and Southridge’s boys teams squared off at Rood Bridge Park Oct. 3 in one of the Metro’s two multi-team meets, and in the first week of a month of league competition, it was the Wildcats who held the upper hand.

The Wildcats swept to victory in both of their teams’s dual meets, knocking off Beaverton 20-39 and beating Southridge 15-49 to go to 2-0 behind a great pack performance that saw Westview’s five varsity scorers finish 2-6 in the overall standings.

by: MILES VANCE - RUNNING STRONG - Westview senior RJ Morgan drives toward the finish line at the end of the 5-kilometer Metro League race at Hillsboro's Rood Bridge Park on Oct. 3.

“We did really well today. I knew we were going to win,” said Westview senior RJ Morgan, who finished the hilly 5-kilometer course in second place overall at 16 minutes, 51.47 seconds. “Our goal was just to stick with each other and push as a team.”

The Wildcats stuck with each other like nobody’s business, with Morgan followed across the finish line by Alec Smith (third in 16:53.78), Matthew Kingzett (fourth in 16:59.81), Dakota McFadden (fifth in 17:19.75), and Timothy Motsiff (sixth in 17:20.37).

While there’s much more work to be done, the Cats’ success last week left them feeling good about their chances to reach state this year.

“We’re really looking forward to competing against Lincoln,” Morgan said, “We know Jesuit’s going to win, so it’s a race for second place between us and Lincoln. We’re really hoping to get better as team throughout these meets and push each other and get to state.”

Beaverton beat Southridge 15-49 in the day’s other dual meet, and did so behind the leadership of senior Dan Oekerman, the individual champion who finished at 16:08.53. Oekerman, coming off a flu-plagued sixth-place finish at the Nike Pre-Nationals four days earlier, said his goal for the day was to pull his teammates along to try and challenge Westview.

“Our main goal was just to come out here and try to beat Westview,” Oekerman said. “I stuck with our No. 2 for the first mile ... and then made sure I got the win. We had a couple guys run the wrong way, which was kind of frustrating, but it will just be more of a surprise at district if we do something.”

Oekerman, who placed third at state a year ago, took off midway through the race, ran past Westview’s pack and ended up winning by almost 43 seconds.

“On Saturday (at the Nike meet), I was feeling pretty sick,” Oekerman said. “But I had a couple easy days and I’m feeling better.”

“My goal was to stay with Dan, but he’s a really good runner and he kept getting faster and faster,” Morgan said. “For me, it was a really good workout just to stay with the top guy and see what state experience might be like.”

Following Oekerman, teammate Drew Larabee placed eighth at 17:53.41, followed by Harrison Garrett (ninth at 17:55.59), Daniel Larabee (10th at 18:03.53), and Jake Fenger (11th at 18:08.69).

For Southridge, which went 0-2 on the day, Andrew Kreiter was its top finisher in 13th place at 18:39.56. He was followed by teammates Jordan Hamada (17th at 18:45.69, Colin Jones (18th at 18:52.59, Adam Herbers (25th at 19:36.00), and Riley Temple (28th at 19:45.38).

In upcoming meets, Westview runs in the Fernhill Race in Portland at 8 a.m. Saturday, then faces Aloha, Southridge and Jesuit at Jesuit High School at 4:30 p.m. on Oct. 17. Beaverton will run next against Sunset and Lincoln at Pier Park at 4:30 p.m. Oct. 17.