Eugene — The weather peaked up for the 4A cross country state championship, as the sun came out a bit and brought some warmth to the soggy, chilly environment at Lane Community College in Eugene. Here are the headliners from the 4A cross country championship on Saturday:
Potratz Goes Out A Champion
For the second time on Saturday, a first-time state champion was crowned on the cross-country circuit. Phoenix senior Kyla Potratz took home the 4A state championship with a comfortable 26 second victory over state runner-up Cecilia Villagomez of La Grande. Kyla also becomes the first individual state champion in Phoenix history, leaving behind a legacy as the best to ever put on the uniform for the Pirates program.
La Grande Dominates The Field
Led by the trio of Cecilia Villagomez, Emily Tubbs, and Brooke Perry, the La Grande Tigers found themselves way ahead of the rest as they cruised to the 4A team title with a score of 62 points. Cecilia, Emily, and Brooke took home the second, third, and fourth positions in the race, while Kiah Carlson took home a 14th place spot to fit four Tigers into the Top 15. For La Grande, it is their first title in school history, with their 2016 runner-up finish being their prior best before Saturday.
Alaina Cassady Moves Up The Field
In sports, not everything is about the team that won the game, match, or meet. On Saturday, Alaina Cassady from The Dalles made a splash in the 4A championship race, charging all the way from the 14th spot to a seventh-place finish to close out the season. Alaina was sitting 14th at the one-mile mark and 13th at the two-mile mark, but she kicked up the engine into high gear and gained six more spots to close out the year at seventh in 4A. She was one of six girls who gained at least six spots over the final part of the race, the others were Sara Slade (North Bend), teammate Ruby Jaimes Mora, Ella Clyde (Seaside), Kara Johnson (Klamath Union), and Katie Spaugh (Baker).