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Cross country runs at districts

Scappoose boys and girls headed to state, Lions' Brian Strang will participate as an individual


Cowapa League District Meet

Midway through the girls’ race, Scappoose head coach David Harley knew the result would be close. Tillamook was ranked just ahead of the Indians by the coaches, and Seaside had come ready to run.

He just had no way of knowing exactly how close.

The Tribe girls finished first in Wednesday’s Cowapa League Championships, but not by much – just one point ahead of Seaside. Senior Charlie Davidson wrapped up her second individual title with a time of 19:49, this year by a whopping 21 seconds over Seaside’s Charlotte Blakesley.

by: JOHN WILLIAM HOWARD - Scappoose senior Charlie Davidson reaches the finish line at the Trojan Relays earlier this month. For the second straight season, Davidson won the Cowapa League individual title, and will contend at the state level.Junior Rachael Bode took eighth overall with a time of 22:38.33, but in this sport it’s not the time that matters, but the placing. Hannah Sleightam, and Lindsay and Emily Marquardt finished 14th, 15th and 16th respectively, making the difference in a way Harley says will benefit the team in a big way at the state meet.

It’s easy to forget the team aspect of cross country, he said, and the narrow margin of victory will serve to remind the runners of how important each individual effort is in the team’s finish.

“They know ‘OK, I’m not just running for me, I’m running for my whole team. If I get passed by one girl, it goes the other direction.’ It makes them feel really good about their effort, I think,” he said. “That’s why I like tight races like that. It makes them feel more a part of the team scoring.”

Harley doesn’t expect the team to challenge for a team trophy during the state championships at Lane Community College on Nov. 2, but he has high hopes for Davidson to compete for the individual title.

Molalla’s Emily Beaver and Marshfield’s Shaylen Cook have been vying with Davidson for the top spot in the 4A division all season, and it all comes down to the race in a week’s time. Both Beaver and Davidson chose to give up soccer and pursue cross country, adding an extra layer of weight to next week’s showdown.

“It’s been great. I think they’ve each won one race against the other all year long, and this will be the tie breaker,” he said. “(Cook) is going to be right there too. Really, I see it as a three person race. It should be interesting.”

Davidson, however, isn’t too focused on Beaver. Her strategy, which seems to have worked rather well on Wednesday, is to simply pay attention to her own race and give it her all.

“I’m expecting it to be really hard, in a pack of four or five girls in the front” said Davison. “A really hard, fast race.”

It was also a strong outing for the Scappoose boy’s team, who finished in second place behind a fourth place overall finish from junior Dan Carrier. Senior Hunter Hoyt took eighth place, followed by Jacob Harley in 16th place. Steven Gift and Mason Reardon finished 18th and 19th respectively. The Indians were well behind first-place Tillamook, but will join the girls’ team at the state meet on Nov. 2.

Northwest Oregon Conference District Meet

Lion senior Brian Strang had a strong showing for St. Helens cross country at the Northwest Oregon Conference district championships on Wednesday afternoon, finishing with a time of 17:13, good for third place overall.

Tanner Boyle and Tanner Matlock also finished in the top 15 for the Lions, who placed fifth with 98 points in the league, which was dominated by Wilsonville’s 49 points.

The top finisher for the Lady Lions was freshman Josie Hannah, who came in 12th place overall with a time of 21:50. Senior Patience Marshall finished in the top 20 for St. Helens at 18th, just enough for the Lions 112 points to slip in ahead of Liberty for fourth place.