HIGH SCHOOL BOYS CROSS COUNTRY PRIMER
TEAM TO BEAT
The streak isn’t likely to be broken this year. The Northwest Christian of Lacey boys, who have won back-to-back Class 2B state championships, have 16 consecutive state cross country appearances — the longest streak in Washington. Since the program began in 1999, the Navigators have won four state titles, which is the 2B record.
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1. SCHILTER SEEKS TOP SPOT: For three seasons, an individual 2B state championship has eluded Northwest Christian’s Luke Schilter — he finished second as a freshman, sophomore and junior. He gets one more run at it this year.
2. CAPITAL CONTENDERS: Five state-qualifying runners are back for the Cougars, who took 15th in the 3A state meet last season, including frontrunner Beau Crabill, and seniors Jace Cotton and Jamison Spence.
3. BEARS PACKED CLOSE: There’s no obvious frontrunner this year, coach Jesse Stevick says — there was a 12-second spread between Nos. 1 and 6 at the 4A state meet last year — but there is depth. Olympia returns five state competitors, all sophomores and juniors, and travels to the Stanford Invitational in California on Oct. 1.
RUNNERS TO WATCH
Capital’s top finisher at the 3A state meet last year. Expected to lead veteran Cougars back to Pasco.
Had the best finish of any local at the 2A state meet last year, rolling in at 15th.
Three-time state competitor is the Rams’ No. 1 returner. Top local finisher at the Fort Steilacoom Invitational (12th).
Northwest Christian (Lacey)
Top-5 runner on both of the Navigators’ back-to-back state championship teams.
Northwest Christian (Lacey)
The 2B state runner-up three years in a row. Looking for first individual title in final season.
RETURNING STATE COMPETITORS
4A — Tilahun Castro, Olympia, soph.; Sam Fleckenstein, Olympia, soph.; Jack McCauley, Olympia, jr.; Dylan Miller, Olympia, jr.; Ben Van Haitsma, Olympia, jr.
3A — John Bretschneider, North Thurston, sr.; Beau Crabill, Capital, sr.; Jace Cotton, Capital, sr.; Dakota Guthrie, North Thurston, jr.; Charlie Jellison, North Thurston, sr.; Tommy Johnson, North Thurston, sr.; William Johnson, Shelton, soph.; Jamison Spence, Capital, sr.; Tanner Stipic, Capital, jr.; Zach Willis, Capital, soph.
2A — Evan Groat, Tumwater, sr.; Ryan Knight, Tumwater, jr.; Joseph Morrissey, Tumwater, jr.
1A — Tucker Holcomb, Elma, jr.
2B/1B — Shouridama Beadle, Rainier, sr.; Devyn Davis, Rainier, sr.; Steven Epp, Northwest Christian (Lacey), sr.; Travis Eygabroad, Rainier, soph.; Brighton Klein, Rainier, jr.; Ethan MacFarland, Rainier, soph.; Corban Phillips, Northwest Christian (Lacey), sr.; Luke Schilter, Northwest Christian (Lacey), sr.; Eli Taylor, Northwest Christian (Lacey), sr.