In the final competition of their mini-season, members of the Sisters High School team, running unattached, produced outstanding results at a meet held Saturday, November 7, at the Alderbrook Golf Course in Tillamook.

The meet featured some of the best high school runners in the state, creating a championship atmosphere. 

Ella Thorsett, last year’s state 4A champion as a freshman, ran in the elite race where she placed third behind two runners from 6A Jesuit High School of Portland, Chloe Foerster and Molly Grant, who were running for the Stumptown Running Club. 

Foerster, fourth at last year’s 6A state meet, went out hard and was never challenged, finishing in 17:31. Grant was second in 17:57 and Thorsett third in 18:01. Annika Thompson, last year’s 4A runner-up from Junction City placed seventh in 18:15.2.

Senior Pearl Gregg and freshman Ella Bartlett ran in the 4A-division race where they finished fifth (21:09) and seventh (21:56) respectively. Bartlett’s time was a personal record. 

The Sisters boys also ran in what was dubbed the 4A division, where they performed very strongly as three Outlaws, all seniors, placed in the top six among 34 runners.

John Peckham could not overcome a fast start by Keller Nordland of the Timberhill Harriers, who blazed through the first mile in 4:37 and finished in 15:16.5. 

Peckham came through next in 15:35, followed by Will Thorsett in third place (15:43.4) and Ethan Hosang in sixth (15:45.3).

The three senior boys are emerging as the top three 4A runners in the state, according to Coach Josh Nordell.

“These three are consistently running faster than any runners in Outlaws’ cross-country history,” he said.

Sophomore Hayden Roth ran a personal best of 18:37 to place 18th. Senior Sam May, who has run in the low-17-minute range this season, had an off day and finished 20th in a time of 18:53, while junor Kaleb Briggs finished 22nd in 19:22. 

Assistant Coach Dennis Dempsey commended all the runners on their strong performances and their dedication to making the best of a season disrupted by COVID-19. 

“These kids impress me every day,” he said. “The hard work and focus they display really paid off for them in this meet and will bring dividends throughout their lives.”

Head Coach Nordell echoed Dempsey’s sentiments. 

“These kids are among the best runners, and best young people in general, in the state,” he said. I can’t say enough about how much I appreciate them.”

Nordell also shared appreciation for Tillamook cross country coach Patrick Zweifel, who has helped organize a number of meets this fall.

“Pat made opportunities for a bunch of kids who wouldn’t have gotten to race at all this fall and he deserves a ton of credit for making these meets happen,” he said.