Sports

Cougars complete XC run

PASCO — For Central Kitsap, the cross country season ended the way it progessed all fall — with strong performances and strong improvements.

The Central Kitsap XC boys finished in 12th place overall at the 4A WIAA State Cross Country Championships Saturday, the school’s top finish under coach John Emery.

Shane Moskowitz highlighted the team’s effort, taking ninth place overall, finishing the course in 16 minutes, 15 seconds. Moskowitz’s effort also was the top finisher under Emery.

“That was outstanding for him,” Emery said.

As for the team placing, Emery said his boys were extremely pleased with the finish.

“Yes, they were,” he said. “That was a big event for them. They were really excited about it.”

Shannon Moskowtiz, Shane’s twin sister, was the lone female runner to advance for CK, but showed marked improvement in taking 39th overall with a time of 20:11.

“She did excellent,” Emery said. “She moved up tremendously. She moved up 40-plus spots from last year to this year.”

But the highlight for both the boys and Shannon was that both CK squads won the 4A sportsmanship awards.

“They were very surprised,” Emery said when the awards were announced. “That was really nice. It just goes to show what nice young ladies and gentlemen I have.”

Seniors Cascade Herriott and Rustin Winger saw their CK careers come to an end Saturday, but both made the most of it.

“They did really well,” Emery said. “Cascade did quite well. He drove himself all the way through it. And Rustin did well.”

Herriott ran the course in 17:03 while Winger wrapped up his race in 17:49.

“It was really nice to give them that opportunity as seniors,” Emery said. “Now they have the opportunity to compete at the college level.”

Emery said both are undecided on where they’ll try to run next season.

As for Shane, he’ll have one more meet as Emery said with his time, he’s qualified for Borderclash, a meet that pits Oregon’s top distance runners against Washington’s.

“He wanted to go to Borderclash, and it looks like he’s going to make it,” Emery said.

While CK graduates two seniors from the boys varsity team, some youngsters got state experience early in their high school careers at the meet, held at Sun Willows Golf Course.

Freshman Zachary Weber took 117th overall in 17:59 while fellow frosh Nicholas Wilson was 133rd in 18:32. Sophomores Mark Zylstra (144; 19:06) and Andrew Thorsen (146th; 19:52).

While not at state, Emery said runners like Nick Pittman and Mark Milcic also saw big gains this year.

“Nick Pittman made a good gain on his time,” he said. “He did an excellent job throughout the whole season. We had a lot of top runners in our group. They’ll keep getting faster and stronger as we go along.”

While only Shannon advanced for CK’s girls, Emery said they’ll come back with loads of talent as well.

“Maggie (Crow) was really strong,” he said. “And Brittany Siegrist and Allie Rue, same thing. We’ve got a really good base here.”

He said this year’s seniors brought several intangibles to the team.

“That’s hard to say,” Emery said of picking one. “There’s so many different things. The camaraderie they brought to it, the leadership, their dedication to running. The seniors this year have been very good. They’re very supportive of the younger runners.”

And with so many young core runners returning, Emery said it could be even better next year.

“I’m looking forward to it,” he said. “I think they’ll end up back at state, both teams.”

Olympic

The Trojans’ lone participant at the 3A WIAA State Cross Country Championships made the most of her appearance. After taking 10th at districts a week prior, Oly’s Camie Yeik finished in 33rd place at state, finishing with a time of 20:45.

Klahowya

The Eagles also were represented by just one runner. Senior Noah Caffrey had a solid day at the 2A state cross country championships, taking 51st place with a time of 17:48.

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