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District cross country: Whatcom County sends 59 athletes to state

Sehome, Meridian sweep team titles at their respective meets

Meridian's Braxton Ashmore yells in celebration as he wins the boys 1A District 1 cross country title Saturday
Meridian's Braxton Ashmore yells in celebration as he wins the boys 1A District 1 cross country title Saturday (Andy Bronson/Cascadia Daily News)
By Connor J. Benintendi Sports Editor

Meridian and Sehome swept the team titles at their respective meets and 59 total Whatcom County runners qualified for state following the conclusion of district cross country meets Saturday, Oct. 28.

A total of 31 athletes — 17 girls and 14 boys — qualified across two classifications at the 2A/3A/4A District 1 Cross Country Championships at Lakewood High School. 

The other 28, split between 18 boys and 10 girls, advanced from the 1A District 1-2 Cross Country Championships at the Deming Logging Showgrounds.

The Washington Interscholastic Activities Association Cross Country State Championships will be held at the Sun Willows Golf Course in Pasco, Washington on Saturday, Nov. 4.

1A District 1 Cross Country Championships

Meridian’s boys and girls teams each finished first as a team, automatically qualifying seven runners apiece. Lynden Christian’s boys team also qualified as a group with its second-place finish.

The Trojans also notched a pair of individual first-place finishes, as senior Braxton Ashmore (16:03.64) finished first in the 5,000-meter boys race and sophomore Logan Ignacio (19:35.72) took the top spot in the 5,000-meter girls race for Meridian.

photo  Meridian’s Logan Ignacio took the lead and never gave it up to win the girls 1A District 1 cross country title. (Andy Bronson/Cascadia Daily News)  

Meridian freshman Reuben TeVelde (17:03.86) took third in the boys race, while junior Asher Todd took fourth (17:04.13).

LC sophomore Nickolas Luce finished second overall (16:17.87) for the Lyncs’ boys team, and junior teammate Larson Rische took fifth (17:05.76).


Meridian sophomore Adelle Ashmore took second in the girls race with a time of 20:50.89, followed by junior Ava Hansen in fourth (21:24.06). Mount Baker’s girls group was led by third-place finishes from freshman Violet Fox (21:19.77) and senior Erica Cook (21:33.92).

Full list of state qualifiers (not including alternates):

Meridian boys

1st. Braxton Ashmore, senior, 16:03.64

3rd. Reuben TeVelde, freshman, 17:03.86

4th. Asher Todd, junior, 17:04.13

6th. Nolan Jacoby, junior, 17:06.85

7th. Kellen Todd, junior, 17:32.95

8th. Carson Siadal, sophomore, 17:33.75

13th. Ian Forbes, senior, 17:56.35

Meridian girls

1st. Logan Ignacio, sophomore, 19:35.72

2nd. Adelle Ashmore, sophomore, 20:50.89

4th. Ava Hansen, junior, 21:24.06

6th. Jada Katschke, senior, 22:07.28

8th. Grace Bender, freshman, 22:22.47

9th. Maddy Swanson, freshman, 22:27.18

14th. Natalie Larson, junior, 24:19.70

Lynden Christian boys

2nd. Nickolas Luce, sophomore, 16:17.87

5th. Larson Rische, junior, 17:05.76

9th. Colby Honcoop, freshman, 17:36.77

15th. Haiden Kooiman, freshman, 18:31.27

17th. Levi Zylstra, senior, 18:51.75

29th. Gavin Haskell, sophomore, 20:57.35

30th. Aaron Zhu, sophomore, 21:51.95

Lynden Christian girls

7th. Ella Vos, junior, 22:16.44

Mount Baker boys

10th. Wyatt Freeman, junior, 17:38.20

12th. Cameron Scott, junior, 17:45.29

14th. Palmer Detta, junior, 18:07.56

Mount Baker girls

3rd. Violet Fox, freshman, 21:19.77

5th. Erica Cook, senior, 21:33.92

Nooksack Valley boys

11th. Isaiah Buckley, senior, 17:38.64

2A/3A/4A District 1-2 Cross Country Championships

Sehome captured both the boys and girls team titles on its way to qualifying 14 athletes, while other local Class 2A schools qualified 15. Ferndale qualified one in Class 3A.

Overall, Bellingham freshman Sophie Koch led all Whatcom County qualifiers with her first-place finish in the girls race (18:35.9). The Bayhawks also qualified for state as a team. 

Sehome’s top finisher was junior Abby Rusk, who finished third in the girls 5,000-meter race with a time of 18:44.3. Freshman Lil Desler was close behind Rusk in fourth (18:44.6) while junior Sydney Harri took fifth (18:47.1). 

photo  Squalicum senior Charse Bartlett high-fives Anacortes senior Parker Mong Wednesday, Oct. 18 at the Northwest Conference Cross Country Championships at Civic Stadium. (Finn Wendt/Cascadia Daily News)  

The Mariners’ boys team was led by junior Nick Gargano, finishing fourth with a time of 15:44.4. Gargano’s junior teammate, Skyler Gillham, was two seconds behind him in sixth (15:44.4).

Squalicum’s Chase Bartlett took second overall in the boys race with a time of 15:29.6, and fellow Storm senior Evan Rush followed him in seventh (15:44.7).

Lynden’s lone qualifier, senior Gage Ellis, finished eighth in the boys race with a time of 15:59.4. Ferndale junior Katie Manly also qualified in Class 3A, finishing 16th in the girls race with her time of 20:14.9.

photo  Sehome junior Abby Rusk leads the varsity girls heat Wednesday, Oct. 18 at the Northwest Conference Cross Country Championships at Civic Stadium. (Finn Wendt/Cascadia Daily News)  

Full list of state qualifiers (not including alternates):

Sehome boys

4th. Nick Gargano, junior, 15:42.7

6th. Skyler Gillham, junior, 15:44.4

12th. Heath Terry, junior, 16:04.7

15th. Jackson Rogers, junior, 16:07.4

16th. Sabastien Vahid, junior, 16:07.6

17th. Carter McGaffic, junior, 16:11.8

18th. Dylan Hill, freshman, 16:12.9

Sehome girls

3rd. Abby Rusk, junior, 18:44.6

4th. Lil Desler, freshman, 18:44.6

5th. Sydney Harri, junior, 18:47.1

11th. Samantha Knipp, freshman, 19:16.6

12th. Marcella Leita, senior, 19:21.7

15th. Alivia Hernandez, junior, 19:48.1

19th. Grace Deluca, sophomore, 20:19.1

Bellingham boys

5th. Berkley Pass, sophomore, 15:44.2

10th. Quinn Hartsoch, senior, 16:01.2

13th. Cedar Champol, senior, 16:07.0

Bellingham girls 

1st. Sophie Koch, freshman, 18:35.9

8th. Zaya Smith, junior, 18:54.8

23rd. Ella Dowling, sophomore, 20:27.1

28th. Sylvia Briggs-Bauer, freshman, 21:07.1

31st. Sonia Klise, freshman, 21:22.8

35th. Nora Alexander, freshman, 21:40.0

40th. Avery Manning, sophomore, 22:29.9

Squalicum boys

2nd. Chase Bartlett, senior, 15:29.6

7th. Evan Rush, senior, 15:44.7

14th. Owen Voigt, senior, 16:07.2

Squalicum girls

14th. Emily Bowles, junior, 19:43.3

21st. Audrey Blue, freshman, 20:25.0

Lynden boys

8th. Gage Ellis, senior, 15:59.4

Ferndale girls

16th. Katie Manly, junior, 20:14.9

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