Medical Lake’s cross country team sought out new conquests last Saturday.
And the Cardinals got what they wanted scoring an impressive victory at the 19th annual Wenatchee Invitational. The 1A Cardinals, who outscored 4A Wenatchee 47-54 to win the boys’ team title, were the defending boys’ champions at Clarkston’s Seaport Invite.
“We defeated two good 4A teams and one 3A team,” head coach Gene Blankenship said. Hanford, a 2A school, was third (92 points) and local school, 3A Eastmont, was fourth (103).
The Cardinals earned two finishes in the top-5 and three in the top-10 at the Walla Walla Point State Park 4,800 meter, 3-mile course along the Columbia River. Juniors Micah Dingfield and Domenic Rehm finished in a tie for third and fourth in a time of 16 minutes, 8 seconds.
“The boys had an excellent race,” Blankenship said. “Jacob is closing the gap on Micah and Dom.”
The Wenatchee pair of Cole Christman was first at 15:41 with Sam Martin second at 15:51. Medical Lake’s Jacob Dingfield was seventh at 16:26 while Tim Chernishoff’s 16:43 left him just out of the top-10 in 11th.
“It was a really fast first mile, but we survived it,” Blankenship said. “This is the closest finish Domenic has had to Micah.”
On the girls’ side Medical Lake was fourth with 78 points. Hanford won the team title with 29 points, followed by Eastmont (51) and Wenatchee (57).
Kaylin Sattler’s 20:20 was good for seventh behind winner Betsy Arlt of Eastmont who was first at 18:51. Meleeka Wegner clocked a 20:54, good for 13th and an ailing Sakaiya McCoy was 16th at 21:13. McCoy was running with a pulled muscle, Blankenship said.
“The girls struggled a little bit, but we did have three girls PR on the course,” Blankenship said. Braydn Wegner’s 22:03 topped her previous best time by almost four minutes. Sattler and Maleeka Wegner’s numbers were also their career bests.
With a third place at the Coaster Classic at Silverwood to open the season, a strong showing at the Highlander, and now the Wenatchee win, the Cardinals now turn attention to the races that count.
Tuesday the teams travel to Newport to meet the hosts, plus Freeman in the first Northeast A League competition at 4:45 p.m.. The following Tuesday Medical Lake will test preseason favorites and defending league champion Lakeside in a race at Sontag Park near Nine Mile.
Paul Delaney can be reached at email@example.com.