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9/4/2013 12:13:00 PM
Valley Catholic Cross Country
Photos by Joe Kramer Photography
Cooper Roach
Photos by Joe Kramer Photography
Cooper Roach
Josephine Chau
Josephine Chau

BEAVERTON — Last year as a junior, Valley Catholic’s Cooper Roach took ninth at the 3A/2A/1A state meet running the 5k course in 16:59, just a minute behind the top finisher. Wilder Boyden, as a sophomore, finished 14th at state in 17:16. Nathaniel Trobough, also a sophomore last year, placed 50th at 18:35. A freshman, David Gehlen was among the fastest of first years, coming in at 19:28 and placing 71st. This combination was enough to give the Valiants eighth place in the team competition with hopes to bring the young team higher this year.

The team returns all but one runner from last year’s team that finished second at districts. Led by Roach, Boyden and Trobough, the team includes sophomore Ben Davidson and senior Michael Leslie. Incoming freshman Jacob Godshalk has shown well so far in fall practices. The Valiants boys team is its largest yet, with more than 20 runners out

“Our boys’ cross country team has worked very hard this off-season and with the veteran leadership of Cooper, Wilder and Nathaniel we hope to build on last year’s second place finish at districts and make a run at state,” says Tommy Manning, the head coach.

In women’s cross country, Valiant sophomore Maricela Jaroch wowed the field as a freshman last year, placing sixth with a 20:17. She was one of only two first-years in the top 10. Ermina Lee, another freshman last year, placed 24th with a time of 21:32. Annika Holstrom, as a junior, came in 36th at 21:59. In 50th at 22:24 was Grace Mannen, then a junior. It all added up to second place in state for the Valiants and legitimate aspirations for a 3A/2A/1A title in 2013. All four runners are back. Jaroch earned first team all-state honors last season and Lee earned all-state honorable mention.

“We are returning four of our big contributors from last season,” says Eric Berge, head coach. “If we train hard and stay healthy we will contend for a district title and should be competitive at the state meet.”

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