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Sweet Home, Oregon
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October 24, 2012     The New Era Paper
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1 T, ra - October 24, 2012 SPORTS Page. 17 PRs a'plenty as Huskies run fasL Elmira course With the district cross-country meet rap- idly approaching, Sweet Home got a good sense of where it's running among league teams at the Country Fair Classic held on the Country Fairgrounds outside Elmira Wednes- day, Oct. 10. All but La Pine were there and, although the Hawks boys are looking like contenders for the No. 2 spot at district behind Sisters, which has been dominant on both the boys and girls side in 2012, Sweet Home showed it might have enough to be competitive for a trip to state this year. The Husky girls got a boost with the re- turn of Nicole Rasmussen, last year's district winner and sixth-placer at state, who moved back from North Dakota two weeks ago. Rasmussen, whose training, Snow said, has been a little suspect due to the move and other factors, still managed to finish 15th out of the 199 runners, in 20:00.60, after running 19:24 last year. The turf at the Country Fair is fiat and almost springy and there are few tight turns, which lends itself to fast times. Thought last year's course layout was significantly differ- ent than this year's, the changes appeared to be simply geographical as it was still fast enough that five of Sweet Home's seven var- sity girls and six of the boys posted personal records, most of them significant improve- ments. "It's that time of the year; everybody's starting to cut back," Coach Billy Snow said. "A lot of people gear up for (Elmira). A lot of people kind of peak there. It's got a repu- tation and kids expect to run fast there. They aren't afraid to go for it." The length of the course at the Country Fair has been suspect some years, based on times, but Snow said the times he saw "were not only anything so outrageous that it made you wonder." Paige Sanders was 22nd among the girls in 20;36.28, a 25-second personal best, after a fast start. Sierra Swanson was 101st (23:00.67, a 1-minute PR for the fresh- man; Hailey Hummer was right behind in 23:03.13, a 1:12 PR for the senior in her first year of cross-country; Candalynn Johnson was 183rd (27;47.47); followed by Kayla Daniels 186th in 28:07.39, a 42-second PR; and Sierrah Owen, 191st in 29:13.37, a 1:05 PR. Marist won the girls team competition with 111 points, just ahead of Sisters (112) and Marshfield (177). Sweet Home was 15th, with 337 points, among the 27 com- plete teams. Cottage Grove was 18th (374.), Candalynn Johnson lan Wingo Photos by Carissa Swanson Nicole Ramussen, third from left, beats most of the crowd off the line at the start. Elmira was 20th (395) and Junction City was 26th (623). Sophomore Gracie Todd of Sheldon ( 18:25.01) edged Hidden Valley senior Sierra Brown (18:26.36) for the individual girls title. Zoe Falk of Sisters was sixth in 19:33.48. On the boys side, Jakob Hiett was 23rd overall for Sweet Home among 221 runners - the top finisher among underclassmen, in 16:27.66 - a 23-second PR on any course. Sheldon took the boys team title with 55 points behind first-place finisher Jack- son Darland (15:37.17). Hidden Valley was second (100), followed by Roseburg (104), Philomath (142) and Sisters (151) among the 27 full teams to score. The Huskies finished 16th (369), ahead of Elmira (21st, 494) and Cottage Grove (22nd, 514). Brandon Pollard of Sisters was the first Sky-Em finisher in sixth individually (16:09.53). Daniel Danforth was second for the Huskies, 41st overall in 17:25.25 - a minute slower than his time over last year's Coun- try Fair course, lan Wingo was 101st, in 18:34.68, a 40-second over the PR he set on last year's course; Nick Mattson finished 138th (19:2327, a two-second PR), Robei't Gourley was 178th (20:23.62), a 19-second PR; Stephen Bishop was 181st (20:29.47), a five-second personal best; and Kyle Moore- McKay was 191st in 21:03.07, a one-minute best for him. " "The kids ran competitively against oth- er schools," Snow said. "Elmira had all their girls there and I think Cottage Grove was missing one." Looking ahead to the district meet, which begins at 2 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 25, at Lane Community College in Eugene, Snow said both the Sweet Home boys and girls are in the thick of it. Both would have placed second at Elmira behind Sisters among the Sky-Em teams that ran there. On the girls side, Sweet Home would have scored 53 points, Cottage Grove 70 and Elmira 72. "But that could swing so easily," Snow said. "All three of those teams are right there. Our first four on the girls side have to do their job. And the other three will be hugely im- portant - they all need to be right there with each other so if can just pull each other along, we have a shot." On the boys side, normal fourth run- ner David Johnson was not at Elmira due to grades, but Snow said Friday it appeared things had been straightened out and Johnson would be eligible to run at district, where La Pine appears to be the Huskies' biggest chal- lenge behind Sisters, which looks to be the clear front-runner. "The guys are right there," he said. "The problem we face in a small meet is that both our boys and girls are almost better big-race teams because of our top runners. The ques- tion is where we need to be relative to the people we need to beat. "Overall, the good thing is that when the kids go down there, they have a shot as a team." Boys lose 1-0 tc, Jun,::ti()n City, fall in C'.T to Elmira Junction City edged out the Sweet Home High School boys soccer team 1-0 at Junction City Monday evening. "It was a very close game," said Coach Ryan Regrutto. "We gave up the only goal of the game 60 minutes into the game." Junction City had a long free kick, Regrutto said. The goal!e caught the ball but dropped it. Junction City players followed up on the kick and were able to knock it in. While losing the game disappointed the players, Regrutto said, he is excited about the way they've been playing and the improvement they've brought onto the field from beginning of the season. The past two years, two years ago in particular, Junction City beat Sweet Home pretty handily, Regrutto said. Just from Junction City's cheering Monday, "you could tell how hard-fought it was." "The boys' main emphasis is winning," Regrutto said. "But the improvement is huge. We had some spells where we were passing the ball around and looking like a real soccer team. That's just huge for me. I don't know if the kids understand the huge leap they've made." For the most part, they've been scoring every game, and last week, the Huskies were leading Elmira before losing 4-2 in overtime at home on Thursday. The Huskies scored two goals quickly, inside the first 15 minutes, Regrutto said. He thinks he might have contested a couple of calls more forcefully, he said. Elmira's first goal was suspect when it came later in the first half. At the same time, "we're not accustomed to being ahead," Regrutto said. "When we're ahead, I feel like we take a step back." When a forward asks to go to defense to make sure the other team See Soccer, page 20 Justin Webb corrals the ball against Elmira as the Huskies took an early lead, then lost it in an eventual 4-2 overtime defeat. Photo by Sean C. Morgan