Ella Thorsett leading Hannah Rannow of Siuslaw at the Paul Mariman Invitational at Philomath High School. 
photo by Charlie Kanzig
Ella Thorsett leading Hannah Rannow of Siuslaw at the Paul Mariman Invitational at Philomath High School. photo by Charlie Kanzig
Freshman Ella Thorsett got a closeup look at the only two 4A girl runners in Oregon who have run faster than her on Saturday, October 12 at the Paul Mariman Invitational, hosted by Philomath High School.

Thorsett finished third in the race behind state leader Hannah Hernandez of Philomath and second-ranked Hannah Rannow of Siuslaw. Hernandez led from start to finish and ran a season’s best of 18:28 for the 5,000-meter course. Rannow got away from Thorsett in the final mile on her way to second in 18:35, while Thorsett crossed the line 10 seconds later in 18:45, nearly 40 seconds ahead of the next

runner.

“That was such a great experience for Ella to see two of the best girls in our classification who are both seniors with lots of experience and loads of state meet medals in cross-country and track,” said Coach Josh Nordell. “Ella is running extremely well.”

Rannow placed fourth at last year’s state cross-country meet and Hernandez finished fifth.

Sisters’ number two and three runners struggled a bit in the race as Kate Bowen finished seventh in 19:54 and Emma Singleton finished about a minute off her best with a time of 21:37 in 27th place.

“It’s rare to have everyone at their best on the same day,” said Nordell. “Between Homecoming week and a bit of sickness going around, some kids had a tougher time than normal.”

Two other varsity runners ran personal bests and another had a season best, however.

Sophomores Sadie Sharp and Skylar Wilkins both showed continued improvement, lopping a full minute off their previous bests to finish in 22:28 and 23:35 respectively. In addition, Pearl Gregg lowered her season best to 22:46. Iris Diez crossed the finish in 24:11, only two seconds off of her personal record.

The girls finished fourth in the team race with 104 points behind Marist Catholic (37), Siuslaw (52) and Philomath (81) among a field of 12 complete teams.

Marist, the undisputed number-one-ranked team among 4A girls, placed four girls in the top 10, despite missing their number-one runner, who was on a college visit. Siuslaw is ranked second in the state, Philomath fourth, and the Outlaws seventh.

“This meet was a great way for us to be more prepared for the type of competition we will be seeing at district, so I am really pleased with the way the kids pushed themselves. Even though we were not at our best, it was still a positive learning experience.”

The Outlaws will compete one final time before the district meet when they travel to the 29-team Creekside Cross Classic in Salem on Wednesday, October 23.

”We are looking forward to a good solid stretch of training in the days ahead,” said Nordell.