XC stars shine bright at ‘Hole in the Wall’ Invitational

LAKEWOOD – The annual Nike Hole in the Wall Cross Country Invitational saw sterling showings from the speediest Spartans at Lakewood High School Saturday, Oct. 7.

There were 97 high school teams competing from Washington, Oregon, California and Canada, according to event officials.

Even among such abundant competition, though, the Bainbridge runners held their own, earning new personal records for 49 of the 72 participating runners and several top 10 finishes, perhaps most notably BHS junior Sebastian Belkin, who, for the second time this season, lowered the school’s 5k record previously held by Ryan Cox.

“The fields for the multiple races over the two-loop course were our most competitive and crowded of the season,” said Spartan Head Coach Anne Lindquist. “BIXC runners met the challenge to pace well, move up steadily and pass competitors after the 1-mile mark.

“From our first race with the quick-start, cool-headed frosh/soph boys team, to the final race of the day — in which Sebastian Belkin again lowered his Bainbridge HS 5k record (15:35.7 for seventh place) — and throughout the day, with runners cheering on teammates and looking out for each other, we’re proud of Saturday’s team effort.”

Team placing and top 10 finishers included: JV 1 boys, eighth place; JV 2 boys, 21st place, frosh/soph boys, 10th place; varsity boys, seventh and 11th place; JV 1 girls, 10th place; JV 2 girls, ninth (Josie Meier) and 11th place; and varsity girls, 32nd place.

“This week, we’ll be looking over racing data and fine tuning your plan for next week’s Metro Championships race,” the coach said.

“Wednesday’s tune-up meet at Lower Woodland Park will familiarize us with the Metro course, and have us practicing specific racing strategy, rather than 100 percent racing effort.”

The Metro Championship Meet began at Lower Woodland Park at 1:15 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 19.

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