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The Observer paper 12/24/14

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Bobcats harriers take title on home course

Unionís McKenzie Evans set a new course record at the Catherine Creek Scamper Friday. (Emma Sheehy/For The Observer)
Unionís McKenzie Evans set a new course record at the Catherine Creek Scamper Friday. (Emma Sheehy/For The Observer)
 

UNION — The Bobcats cruised to an easy win on the girls side of the Catherine Creek Scamper Friday.

Union finished with 26 points, with Pendleton coming in second with 69 total points.

Union’s McKenzie Evans set a modern course record with a time of 20:38, breaking her teammate Katriel O’Reilly’s time of 20:43 set in 2011 to take first place. 

Katriel O’Reilly finished behind her teammate in second with a time of 21:30.

“One of the big stories for the day for us was sophomore Elly Wells,” Union head coach Steve Sheehy said.  “She ran the race of her life to place fourth overall. That is a really remarkable achievement, and it shows how hard Elly has worked since last spring.  She is really running at a new level.” 

Wells’ achievement came in a group that contained the 2012 Oregon state cross country champion, the 2012 Oregon state runner-up, the 2012 Idaho state third place finisher, and a two-time Oregon 4A top-10 finisher.

Amanada Welch of La Grande had a top-10 finish, taking seventh in a time of 23:08.

As a team, La Grande came in fifth with 135 points.

On the boys side, Union won without placing a runner on the podium.

The Bobcats faced a tighter margin, however, scoring 81 points. Southwest Christian finished with 92 points to take second.

David Ribich of Enterprise came in first overall with a time of 17:39.

Elliott Jonasson led the Tigers runners with a sixth-place finish. Jonasson finished the race in 18:48.

La Grande finished third overall with a score of 108.

Todd Keniry, of La Grande, finished just outside the top 10, in 12th place in a time of 19:22.

The Bobcats were led by Ethan Black’s time of 19:15, good enough for eighth place.

Samuel O’Reilly placed second for the Bobcats, 18th overall, in a time of 19:41.

“With some very good team running by our seven varsity boys, we put 6 boys in front of Southwest Christian’s fifth runner to seal the win,” Sheehy said. “Ethan Black and Ken Sipp both had solid races to finish in the top 10.”

Sheehy was also pleased about the event as a whole.

“We had 16 teams represented, including Parma, Idaho, Amity, Oregon, and Southwest Christian (Beaverton),” Sheehy said. “We had 365 finishers spread over five races. It was the 37th year of our meet at Catherine Creek state park.   It was a great meet despite the heat.

 “We had perhaps our best day at the Scamper as a team ever.”

Next Saturday Union travels to the Bob Firman Invitational near Boise, Idaho.

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