Harriers off to district meet

Cross country head coach Richard Christopher had a question for Nolan Amy after he finished the Metro Championship race at Lower Woodland Park in Seattle.

“Why are you limping?”

Amy replied with an honest, if slightly humorous answer for a runner -- an answer that a coach has got to love.

“Because it hurts when I stop,” the Bainbridge senior said.

Amy had just run out first place in the varsity boys race, edging Seattle Prep’s Connor Kilpatric by a few tenths of a second. His time of 15:57 was a personal best by more than 25 seconds, and judging by the smile on his face, the lingering pain of mere walking was well worth it.

“I could hear everybody yelling for (Kilpatric),” Amy said of the Prep runner who was right on his heels at the finish. “I was scared as hell.”

Kilpatric had beaten Amy at last week’s Prep/Blanchet meet on the same course by overtaking him on hills and cruising ahead on the downslope.

Amy used the same tactic Thursday against Kilpatric, and came away with the top spot in the Metro League.

At the first quarter mile, Amy was in fourth place, but dropped to eighth at the 1 3/4 mile mark. He regained fourth place at the top of a grassy knoll, and powered up the next hill to fall in behind Kilpatric. With less than a mile to go, Amy overtook Kilpatric and held on to his kick for the last flat three-quarters of a mile.

Kilpatric finished with the same 15:57 time as Amy, but was four strides behind the Bainbridge senior.

“I was surprised I hung onto it,” Amy said. “That was tough.”

The boys team finished fifth overall, with 101 points. Seattle Prep led all teams with 43, Bishop Blanchet scored 50, Lakeside had 86 and Nathan Hale finished with 97 points.

Rachel Belt led the Spartan girls with a second place finish behind friend and Holy Names rival Bevin Peters, who claimed her second consecutive girls Metro title.

After a fast group start, Belt worked her way out of the lead pack. She clocked a 5:45 first mile, but Peters caught up with her at the two-mile mark.

“We battled it out on the hills,” Belt said of the up-and-down backside of the Lower Woodland course.

Belt finished with a 19:15, 18 seconds behind Peters’ winning time of 18:57.

The girls finished fourth overall, with Blanchet winning the team title, Holy Names taking second and Nathan Hale placing third.

The top six teams and 35 individual runners will advance to the District Championships at Lake Sammamish State Park next Thursday.

Individual results: Boys -- Amy 1st, 15:57; Jason Rowley 9th, 16:53; Max Suffis 19th, 17:26; William Zuchero 34th, 18:07; Colin O’Keefe 38th, 18:21; Trubee Davison 39th, 18:21; Bevan Taylor 47th, 19:13;

Individual results: Girls -- Belt 2nd, 19:15; Erika Bergman 13th, 21:25; Kylie Dardis 16th, 21:40; Kayley Turkheimer 32nd, 22:27; Mehgan Colkitt 34th, 22:29; Skadi von Reis Crooks 36th, 22:31; Christin Garrigues 37th, 22:46.

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