West Valley cross country

The West Valley girl’s cross country team won first place at the Mt. Sac Invitational in Walnut, CA on Friday. From the left, Spring Smith-Hughes, Riga Grubis, Evelyn Wool, Riley Whisler, Ingrid Baurick, Catherine Winford, and Sage Personett. Photo courtesy of Kent Salisbury.

While the ASAA cross country season ended two weeks ago, the West Valley Wolfpack keep on running. On Friday, the girls ran all the way to a first place finish in a national competition.

The Wolfpack competed in the Mt. Sac Invite in Walnut, CA on Friday and the girls team finished in first place at the DII/III/IV level race. The boys team finished second in their meet with senior Daniel Abramowicz finishing first individually.

It was an impressive day for the Wolfpack all around. Several runners finished with personal best times with the girls having their most impressive showing of the year.

The West Valley ladies were led by Riga Grubis, who set a personal record with a time of 19:18.2 to take second place overall, just two seconds behind the first place finisher. Grubis’ teammate Evelyn Wool was right behind her as she took third place with a time of 19:32.4.

Sage Personett was the next West Valley runner to cross the finish line for the girls as she finished 20th with a time of 21:42. Spring Smith-Hughes set a personal record with a time of 22:18.9 to take 30th place while Catherine Winford finished 39th with a time of 22:52. Ingrid Baurick set a personal record with a time of 23:05 for 42nd place while Riley Whisler rounded things out in 67th with a personal record of 25:20.1.

As for the gentlemen, it should be no surprise that Abramowicz finished first. Abramowicz just finished first at state two weeks ago, won two events at state in track this past spring, and has been one of Alaska’s fastest runners his entire career. Yet somehow he keeps getting faster as he set a new PR at Mt. Sac with a time of 15:08.9, 46 seconds faster than the second place finisher.

The next two West Valley runners to cross the finish line both set personal records as Josh Baurick finished in 22nd with a time of 16:25 while Cirdan Vonnahme finished 23rd with a time of 16:25.8. Shane Fisher took 54th with a time of 17:28.5, Koen House was 67th at 17:44, Caleb Petersen set a PR with a time of 17:56 to finish 74th and Jacob Rozell set a PR with a time of 18:01.5 to finish 76th.

It was an impressive follow up for the boys team after they won the state championship for cross country and won the award for highest combined GPA among cross country teams.

The trip concluded the prep cross country season, but the majority of those competitors will be back for track and field season.

Contact sports editor Hart Pisani at hpisani@newsminer.com or 459-7530.

Contact sports editor Hart Pisani at hpisani@newsminer.com or 459-7530.

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