A Tale of Victory-The 2006 Washington State X-Country Championships
By J.E. Meyer and S. Loo
Amid the serene landscape of central Washington emerged a day of fierce competition. The 3.1 mile course in Pasco Washington which is notorious for its rolling hills and shape turns. The looming rain clouds above did nothing to dampen the spirits of the determined competitors and exuberant spectators.
The field of competition was diverse with athletes from all corners of the state with one thing in mind, to run like hell and win. With returning state champions from the eastern half of the state including Mead and Ferris. The western part of Washington was represented by Roosevelt, Redmond, and Seattle Prep and many others. All these schools had one thought on their mind, to win.
Amongst all the fan fare of just having won we were able to grab a few of the first place runners as they walked off the raise podium. The winner of the 1/B,2/B boys race was taken by Brad Serdar with a time of 17:01, although disappointed because he didn't improve from last season, his perseverance and training everyday won out leading him to victory.
Lisa Vanderburg took first for the Girls 1B event with a time of 19:20. She blazed an impressive 15 second lead over her # 2 runner, Joscelyn Minton a Junior from NW Christian of Lacey. Lisa is a freshman, runs for NW Christian of Colbert not to be confused with NWC of Lacey. She is the youngest to date to hail form a running family, her older brother a state ranker. She is one of 2 girls that make up the NWC girls XC team. She is hopeful that her success will draw some of her friends to help build the girls XC squad.
Lizzy Jewson of Charles Wright and Rigoberto Jimenez from Royal won the 1A girls and boys race. Jewson, a seasoned competitor, with years of running cross-coutry and track since middle school, finished in 19:14. When asked "Why running over other sports" Jewson replied "[It] challenges you in a different way than other sports." Rigoberto 16:17, led the way to victory for his second place finisher, twin brother Humberto. 16:28. Both Juniors at Royal HS, they are fierce and busy athletes. , who attributes success to "training all the time." Both runners found time to train regularly thru the summer by scheduling daily runs after long days at work in the Yakima Orchards. Jimenez hopes to have a long running career ahead of him and eventually comeback to coach cross-county one day. They are accomplished athletes who hold top positions on the Royal Wrestling and Soccer squads.
In the 2A girls category, senior Stephanie Marcy of Squim High Schoo. While this was not her fast race every Marcy was happy with her race time of 18:28 which she attributes to a "slower course." Marcy has been running since 7th grade when her PE teacher encouraged her to start. In the boys 2A race, Jake Riley finished with a 15:51. Riley also has a long running career that started in 3rd grade. He started running track in middle school. In the off-season he also likes to snow-board.
The 3A boys race included Max O'donahue from Seattle prep who took 1st place with 15:31. This race was the end a nearly perfect season in which he has only lost 1 race which he came in 2nd. Max started playing basketball but switched to running. Max says he "loves the challenge of running" because "you get out of it what you put in."
The 4A boys winner, Cameron of Ferris High School came in with only the second fastest time of the day with 15:44. Cameron was originally inspired by his brother to run and is now one of the fastest high school runners in the state. Cameron hopes to later run in college.
The 4A girls winner was Kenna Patrick is a senior from Thomas Jefferson. She has been running since she was four years old. Kenna says, "I had to learn to love [running], but it fit my personality and work ethic." Kenna hopes to keep running in college and has a bright future.