The Goldendale Sentinel - Headlines & History since 1879

By Jaryd Cline
Reporter 

SCAC district champions

Goldendale boys hold off Royal, win first SCAC title in school history

 

Jaryd Cline

FINALLY ON TOP: Members of the Goldendale boys cross country team pose with their first place trophy at the South Central Athletic Conference District Championships on Thursday in Cowiche. This marks the first time in school history that a Goldendale cross country team won the SCAC District Championship.

Goldendale head cross country coach Juli Rising knew each of her boys had to run to the best of their abilities on Thursday at the South Central Athletic Conference District Championships to make Goldendale High School history.

And on a rainy afternoon at the Apple Ridge Orchards near Cowiche, the Goldendale boys didn't just meet their expectations, they outran them and captured the SCAC District Championship for the first time in school history.

They also, with a combined team score of 62 points, outran cross country super program Royal, which finished with 81 points, snapping the Royal boys' seven year district championship streak.

The Wolves will send all eight boys runners to state, one being an alternate, for the state meet on Nov. 5. The girls, who, with a fourth place team finish, missed out on qualifying as a team by one spot, will sent two individual runners, freshmen Ellie Rising and Abby Hedges.

"Every single one of them brought it," Juli Rising said, who had four boys finish in the top 15 Thursday.

Although they more than brought it. Each and every runner - boys and girls - set a personal record for this season on the three mile course where runners did two laps with a few extra twists and turns through the orchards.

All season long, Rising and assistant coach Randall Jones have preached how important mental toughness is in running, and on Thursday, the Wolves were unfazed by the pressure and expectations.

"I could just tell their heads were in the right spot because all five of the guys went out hard," Rising said.

"All my guys did exactly what I wanted them to do," she added. "All PRed. All ran tough. None of them had that mental breakdown that a couple of them have been having all season."

They even were running hard enough to catch the attention of one of Royal's assistant coaches midway through the race.

"(He) comes up to me and was like 'Holy cow, you guys are just burying us in a sea of purple,'" Rising said.

The Wolves were led by last year's district champion Dillon Rising, who took runner-up in 16 minutes, 7.6 seconds. Rising entered the race having won the previous three five kilometer runs on Oct. 6, 13 and 20, but took second on Thursday to College Place's Kenneth Rooks, who turned heads with his 15:29.3 time. College Place is new to the SCAC and Class 1A ranks this year, and Rooks was last year's 1B/2B state champion.

After Dillon Rising, Sophomore Lucas Anderson cracked the top 10 with a seventh place showing in 16:52.8 and Corbin Riley finished 12th in 17:13.5. Just a freshman, Riley has shown improvement in each race this season.

"Corbin Riley's come on every single week as a freshman," Juli Rising said.

In the Wolves first meet at the Apple Ridge course on Sept. 17, Riley ran an 18:55.5, and on Thursday, shaved more than a minute and a half off his early-season time.

Goldendale's fourth runner, senior Michael Jagelski, was also on his game Thursday. He finished two spots behind Riley in 14th, crossing the finish line in 17:21.9. He impressed his coaches, who still believe he has a better race in him for the state meet.

"We were worried about Michael (Jagelski). He brought it," Juli Rising said. "I think he still has a faster race in him."

After Jagelski, senior Mykhail Lembke took 28th place in 18:03, senior Will Bostick was 44th in 18:47.9 and Sterling Beasley finished 52nd in the 80 person race in 19:16.2.

Winning the SCAC Championship has been in the back of the team's mind since day one this season and on Thursday, it became a reality.

"It was kind of like a dream come true for those boys," Juli Rising said, "and I told them 'you will remember this for the rest of your life.'"

After Goldendale (62) and Royal (81), Zillah (96), Connell (108) and Granger (109) rounded out the top five teams on the boys' side.

Goldendale girls

Before the season, Juli Rising didn't know if she'd be able to field a full girls' team for this season. The Timberwolves were able to put together a small, inexperienced, five-person team, which shocked Rising herself with a fourth place finish on Thursday.

"I call them my rag-tag team," She added. "For four freshmen and a sophomore to get fourth place, was outstanding."

Freshman Ellie Rising, still feeling the effects of a season-long hip injury, led the Wolves girls' runners with a seventh place showing in 20:31.1. She, along with fellow freshman Hedges, earned berths to the state meet by placing in the top 21. Hedges finished 16th in 21:09.7 in what was her first season of competitive running.

The top 21 runners and top three teams from the girl's side earn trips to the state meet.

The Wolves accumulated 111 team points for fourth place. The Zillah girls finished first with 40 points, Wahluke second with 56 points and Royal finished third, grabbing the final team spot for state with 66 points.

"We were shocked that our girls got fourth place," Juli Rising said. "That was a huge achievement for this little team."

After Rising and Hedges, freshmen Jade Smith (22:43.2) and Savannah Ross (22:45.9) finished back-to-back in 32nd and 33rd place respectively, while sophomore Denise Owen rounded out the Goldendale girls with a 48th place showing in 25:30.1.

Jaryd Cline

Goldendale assistant cross country coach Randall Jones (with plaque), head coach Juli Rising (with trophy) and the Goldendale boys celebrate near the finish line of the Apple Ridge course in Cowiche on Thursday after winning the boys SCAC District Championship.

The state meet starts on Nov. 5 with the Wheelchair Division race at 9:30 a.m. at the Sun Willows Golf Course in Pasco. The Class 1A girl's race is set to begin at 10:30 a.m. while the boy's 1A race is slated to start at noon.

Gannon earns state bid

Bickleton sophomore runner Michael Gannon punched his ticket to the state meet in Pasco with a 15th place showing at the 1B/2B District 5-6 Championships on Saturday at Walla Walla Point Park in Wenatchee.

The top 21 runners and top four teams from the meet earned berths to the state meet, where the Class 1B/2B meet is scheduled to start at 11:30.

After Gannon, eighth grader Christain Arriaga finished the three mile course in 19:13 for 33rd place, and Cesareo Arriaga finished 50th in 20:41.

Senior Joseph Cummings stopped the clocks at 21:01 for the Pirates, while Scott McBride set a season-best time of 30:13.­

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