Saturday’s 1B/2B Cross Country: Adna’s Apperson Wins, Mossyrock’s Lovan With Strong Showing at District 4 1B/2B XC
By Matt Baide
ONALASKA — Mossyrock’s Sarah Lovan and Adna’s Austen Apperson were the highest local finishers at the District 4 1B/2B cross country race here on Saturday morning.
In the boys race, Apperson won the race with a time of 15 minutes, 11 seconds, winning the race for the second straight year.
“It was good, I was really happy with how it went. It was smooth and it gets me excited for next week,” Apperson said.
Apperson has raced this course several times in his prep career which helps give him an advantage over the competition.
“This is probably the fifth time I’ve raced this course in my career and because of that, I have a lot of confidence in it,” Apperson explained. “I know it inside and out. It’s great to always come back here and have confidence that you know the course really well.”
As the defending state champion, Apperson knows there is a target on his back, but is confident he can stay ahead of the competition.
“No not really. I have confidence in all the work I put in. I know the competition well and I’m confident in my abilities,” Apperson said.
Onalaska’s Zachary Wright finished in fifth place with a time of 16:07. Toledo’s Nicholas Marty earned eighth place with a time of 16:48.
Also qualifying for state was Adna’s Matthew Scheuber, placing 23rd with a time of 17:39. Finishing close behind Scheuber was Mossyrock’s James Cushman and Gunner Mulligan, with Cushman finishing in 24th place, just 0.35 seconds ahead of Mulligan in 25th place.
Morton-White Pass had a trio of runners finish in sequential order. Manuel Martinez was the highest finisher in 28th place with a time of 17:43. Right behind Martinez was Asher Sympson in 29th place with a time of 17:46 and David Martinez placed 30th with a time of 17:51.
Napavine’s Caleb Perz Stewart finished in 40th with a time of 18:19. MWP’s Alex Brown earned the final individual state qualifying spot, earning 42nd with a time of 18:25.
Northwest Christian won the team title and Morton-White Pass was the final team qualifier with a sixth place finish.
In the girls race, Lovan placed seventh with a time of 20:02. Lovan wasn’t thrilled with her performance but has been preparing for this race since the beginning of the season.
“This is what we’ve been looking forward to the whole season and really like my whole career is districts, senior year. You’ve got to get there and now we’re here and it’s over but it was good I guess,” Lovan said. “I did OK. I’m OK with how it turned out. I really wanted to get into the 19’s but it’s OK.”
The Vikings came to the course to familiarize themselves before the district race and being a senior, Lovan knows the course well.
“We’ve practiced several times here too,” Lovan said. “We’ve taken vans and come here to practice and I think that’s helped a lot because you know exactly how far the loop is and it just made it easier for me.”
Adna’s Lauryn Apperson finished 15th with a time of 21:01.
Morton-White Pass’ Kaylen Collette is also going to state next Saturday, finishing 20th with a time of 21:18. MWP’s Alissa Hughes finished in 29th with a time of 21:59.
Toledo has two runners going to state in Greenlee Clark and Ashley White. Clark finished in 33rd with a time of 22:08 and White placed 34th with a time of 22:13.
Rainier won the team title and Life Christian’s Gabby Martin won the girls race with a time of 18:32.
The 17 individuals and the Morton-White Pass boys team will compete at the WIAA State 1B/2B cross country meet next Saturday at Sun Willows Golf Course in Pasco.
Even though he won last year, Apperson wasn’t pleased with his performance and wants to leave it all out there in his senior year.
“Run a good time, leave it all out there,” Apperson said. “Yes I won last year but I wasn’t totally thrilled with how I performed using other metrics and everything. So next week, I would really just love to feel like I really just left it all out there and come away with a fast time and the win.”
Lovan has a few goals in mind for the state race in Pasco.
“Run hard, do the best I can, have a good time with my friends,” Lovan said. “It has been an amazing senior year. I’ve had a really good time with all my friends and I’m glad it has ended the way it has.”