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S'side High harriers fare well at Columbia Basin League meet

RICHLAND - Sunnyside senior Sterling Scott turned in the second fastest 3A time at yesterday's Columbia Basin League cross country meet, staged at Richland's Leslie Grove Park.

Tuesday's competition, the first league dual meet of the season, featured both 4A and 3A runners.

On the girls side, junior Brittany Messmore of Sunnyside ran the seventh fastest 3A time.

Robin Bryson, coach of the Sunnyside High School cross country squads, praised all her runners for their efforts yesterday. Especially, she noted, coming off just two days rest following this past Saturday's competition in Ellensburg.

Team scoring-wise yesterday, the Grizzly boys defeated the West Valley Rams by a 21-34 score. Kamiakin and Hanford prevailed over the Grizzlies by scores of 25-33 and 26-32, respectively.

From among the 3A boys competitors, the only runner to beat Scott to the finish line was Kamiakin senior Brad Young. The Braves' long distance runner clocked a time of 17:36 on the five-kilometer course. Young finished sixth overall, as the top five finishers all hailed from 4A schools.

Scott was just 23 seconds back of Young, finishing in 17:59. That clocking was the second fastest 3A boys time and the 12th best time overall.

"Sterling ran well," said Bryson of Scott's performance, explaining the Leslie Grove Park course, despite being relatively flat, isn't necessarily a quick track.

"There are a couple spots on the course where the runners tend to bog down a little," Bryson said, noting one stretch is comprised of sand and gravel.

The overall boys race winner was Richland's Tyler Noland. He sped to the finishing tape in a time of 16:33. Graham Vaux of Davis High School was eight seconds back (16:41) to claim the No. 2 spot.

Second in for the Grizzly boys yesterday was freshman Jordan Esqueda. He was timed at 18:10, just 11 seconds behind Scott, for an overall 18th place finish. Esqueda's performance was the sixth fastest 3A time.

Right on Esqueda's heels was teammate Jacob Rogers, a sophomore, who placed 19th overall from the 4A/3A ranks with a clocking of 18:19.

Also competing for Sunnyside in Tuesday's boys varsity race were sophomore Gracen Gonzalez, 34th overall in 19:19; junior Gilberto Villalobos, 38th overall in 19:58; sophomore Matthew Omlin, 44th overall in 21:20; and freshman Kennedy Sarmiento, 46th overall in 22:01.

The girls race winner, hailing from 3A West Valley, was junior Stephanie Shuel. She was eight seconds faster than the runner-up, sophomore Sandra Martinez of 4A Davis. Shuel posted the only sub-20-minute time with a clocking of 19:54.

Messmore, Sunnyside's top finisher in the girls race, sped to the seventh fastest 3A time with a clocking of 22:13.

"It was a good, solid race for Brittany," said Bryson.

Sunnyside, too, have five other runners in the girls varsity race. From the 46-girl field, they finished 42nd through 46th. The harriers included freshman Marlene Manzo (28:03), sophomore Monica Manzo (32:10), freshman Kassandra Reyes (33:11), freshman Amanda Montelongo (35:52) and sophomore Karina Romero (36:06).

In the girls team scoring, West Valley, Kamiakin and Hanford all bested the Lady Grizzlies.

In Tuesday's JV boys race, Sunnyside's top finisher was senior Dane Schmick. He clocked a 21:27 to place 55th overall from the 129-man field. The JV boys race winner was Eisenhower junior Derrick Thomas (18:30). Senior Zeke Galvan had the second best finish for Sunnyside, placing 72nd overall in a time of 22:06.

Sunnyside's cross country squads are next scheduled to compete at the Prosser Invitational this coming Saturday.

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