Rams cross country runners peak at the right time

The West Valley boys cross country team placed four runners among the top 12 at the Oct. 31 CBBN district meet, winning the championship by two points over Eisenhower.

West Valley_1

The Rams also won the CBBN title in 2018 but graduated three key seniors. As it turned out, the young Rams were up to the challenge.

Junior Brayden Packard took second place in 15:49, followed by juniors Ben Connell (fifth, 16:11) and Liam Rickey (seventh, 16:32), and senior Anthony Carlascio (12th, 16:38).

Junior Dustin Young finished 18th in 16:55, freshman Max Hutton was 21st in 17:19 and senior Russell Ridd was 26th in 17:28.

“The boys split the league title with Ike and then rose to the occasion to repeat as district champs and earn another trip to state,” head coach Jamie Nordstrom said.

Three other runners — Israel McDonald, Nick Izutsu and Dane Voldmann — also saw varsity time this season, while the JV team placed six runners among the top eight at district.

“The future remains bright,” Nordstrom said.

At state, Packard finished 28th overall in 15:52, followed by Connell (40th, 16:04), Rickey (69th, 16:21), Carlascio (98th, 16:39), Young (127th, 17:01), Ridd (149th, 17:16) and Hutton (156th, 17:22). The Rams placed ninth as a team.

The girls also performed well all season, led by seniors Lily Fetzer and Hannah Bremerman, junior Rachel Argento and sophomore Brooke Bauer.

Fetzer, who chose cross country over soccer this fall, placed seventh at district with a time of 19:39, while Argento — a returning state qualifier — was ninth in 19:52. Bauer took 14th in 19:58 and Bremerman was 17th in 20:13.

“Lily led us all season,” the coach said, also applauding hard work of juniors Emma Fillmore and Kiana Griffiths, and freshman Rebecca Darwood.

The Rams finished third in the team standings at district, just one point behind Wenatchee.

“The girls missed qualifying for state by one point, but sent three runners to state,” Nordstrom said.

Fetzer placed 75th at state with a time of 19:44, Argento was 83rd in 19:52 and Bauer was 116th in 20:29.