On its way to the NWAACC championship, the Lane women’s cross-country team conquered the Oct. 26 South Region championships at Clackamas Community College.
Titans freshman Katy Potter cruised to an easy victory in 18:58.29, almost a minute slower than her personal best time.
“I honestly thought it would be a closer race,” Potter said. “I’m very proud of our team and how well we performed.”
The Titans dominated the meet, placing five of their runners in the top eight and finishing with a team score of 24 points. Treasure Valley and and Mt. Hood community colleges each scored 83 points and tied for second.
“We didn’t have to run too hard up front with Katy kind of holding back for the first mile,” Titans head coach Mike Blackmore said. “I think that helped keep our top four runners pretty close to each other and made our day a lot easier.”
Potter was followed by sophomore Macaulay Wilson, who placed third in 19:20.58, and freshman Nicole Maurmann, who finished fifth in 19:24.05. Wilson is the only returning runner from last years squad.
Freshman Ali Cross finished seventh in 19:50.98 and freshman Kristine Dunn took eighth in 19:57.06 to round out the top five for the Titans.
This victory comes only a year after the Titans finished last in their region and second to last at the NWAACC championships.
“It was really exciting when we started to realize that we were going to be able to win Southern Regionals, because last year that wasn’t the case at all,” Wilson said. “I’m so proud of our team because we’ve trained so hard and so smart this year.”
The Titans men placed second with 53 points, but were unable to chase down Clackamas Community College, who easily won with 26 points.
“The Clackamas men came to race today,” Blackmore said. “They basically went to the front of the pack and controlled the race.”
Blackmore said that Jonathan and David Cornish had been dealing with sickness during the week leading up to the race and that he was proud of the way they battled Clackamas’s top runners.
“I think the guys are tired a little bit,” Blackmore said. “So we’ll just have to recoup a little bit and just get ready for NWAACCs and hope things come together.”
The Cougars finished 1-2-3 and were led by individual champion Badane Sultessa, who finished in 25:46.01.
Eduardo Juarez, Jonathan Cornish and David Cornish finished fifth, sixth and eighth respectively for Lane, but the Titans were unable to deal with the depth of the Cougars, who finished with four runners in the top seven.
Juarez, who finished in 26:05.38, said he hopes the team will use the disappointing finish as motivation at the NWAACC Championships.
“I’m hungrier now, I wanna go after (Clackamas) next time and I wanna catch them,” he said. “I wanna go get it done with my team.”