Falcons Dihle Fastest Girl in Sitka XC Field, Crimson Bears Girls Top Team

    The start of Saturday's Sitka Invitational girls cross-country meet. (courtesy photo)

    Juneau, Alaska (KINY) - Thunder Mountain Falcons senior Kiah Dihle continued her quest for a Region V Cross-Country Championship by winning the Sitka Invitational Meet in a time of 19 minutes and 16 seconds on Saturday and the Juneau-Douglas Yadaa.at Kalé Crimson Bears did the same in the team scoring.

      “All of us TMHS coaches were really proud of our runners this past weekend,” Thunder Mountain coach Topaz Shryock said. “They ran hard and pushed each other to do their best. Most of them had very solid races, and we saw them run tighter together than in some of the past races. We look forward to seeing how they will perform as a team over the next couple weeks of the season.” 

      Dihle was over 30 seconds faster than the field with Sitka’s Clare Mullen and Anna Prussian placing second and third in 19:40 and 19:53, respectively.

      JDHS senior Annika Schwartz led a trio of Crimson Bears in the top ten with a fourth-place time of 20:12 and sophomore’s Etta Eller placed sixth in 20:40 and Rayna Tuckwood seventh in 20:52.

       JDHS coaches Tristan Knutson-Lombardo and Merry Ellefson noted that the investment of the coaches, athletes and volunteers in the cross-country communities in Southeast are vital for continuing positive experiences.

      “It’s a pretty cool testament to the depth and breadth of our team that we can spread our runners across two different race locations (three last weekend) and still be competitive in all,” Knutson-Lombardo said.

      JDHS and TMHS were able to hold a race at home at Eagle River State Park that simulated the Sitka Course.

      “So we can travel and still provide equity for runners this season,” Ellefson said. “And we have some new Varsity surprises as we study results and give all of our athletes this opportunity to compete. We want to thank the Juneau School District for the COVID protocols in place that allow our athletes to be in school and running. Mask up and keep our kids in school.”

      TMHS senior Grace Sikes was eighth in 20:55.

      JDHS sophomore Ava Newell edged TMHS senior Katie Ortega, 22:26 to 22:28, respectively, for 15th place and crucial team scoring.

      TMHS senior Abigail Booton, and juniors Mackenzie Olver and Aliyah Overturf finished within a second of each other in spots 20-22 but JDHS senior Ashlie Stringer placed 23rd to secure the team placing.

      TMHS sophomore Sophia Owen placed 25th, JDHS freshman Ellie Yerkes 28th, JDHS freshman Serena Crupi 33rd, JDHS freshman Cerys Hudson 38th, TMHS senior Ruchi Haight 39th and JDHS freshman Talia Aparezuk-Schlosser-Schlosser 46th.

    Next race is the Capital City High School Cross-Country Invitational at Sandy Beach: A Káx Yaa Andagan Yé.

      A Land Acknowledgement at 8:50 a.m. will start events at Yanyeidí Gooch Totem. The junior varsity boys and girls combined race follows at 9 a.m..

      The varsity boys race will be at 9:45 a.m. and the varsity girls run at 10:30 a.m. (masking/social distancing required - cowbells encouraged). Following will be the Top 10 finishers recognitions and then the JDHS and TMHS senior runners will be recognized.


      1. JDHS 41; 2. TMHS 52; 3. HNS 78; 4. KTN 79; 5. PSG 129; 6. MEHS 147.


      1. Dihle, Kiah TMHS 19:16.94; 2. Mullen, Clare SIT 19:40.56; 3. Prussian, Anna SIT 19:53.93; 4. Schwartz, Annika JDHS 20:12.10; 5. Godinez-Long, Ariel HNS 20:24.49; 6. Eller, Etta JDHS 20:40.53; 7. Tuckwood, Rayna JDHS 20:52.26; 8. Sikes, Grace TMHS 20:55.93; 9. Carney, Liana WRG 21:35.37; 10. Frey, Carol KTN 21:41.88; 11. Boehlert, Paige KTN 22:11.85; 12. Lister, Kinley PSG 22:17.70; 13. Holien, Kenai KLWK 22:25.60; 14. Long, Grace HNS 22:25.96; 15. Newell, Ava JDHS 22:26.31; 16. Ortega, Katie TMHS 22:28.84; 17. Anderson, Mia MEHS 22:38.68; 18. Williamson, Avery HNS 22:41.46; 19. Capps, Trisa KTN 22:42.96; 20. Booton, Abigail TMHS 22:44.85; 21. Olver, Mackenzie TMHS 22:45.23; 22. Overturf, Aliyah TMHS 22:46.81; 23. Stringer, Ashlie JDHS 23:12.17; 24. Getchell, Avari HNS 23:18.35; 25. Owen, Sophia TMHS 23:35.26; 26. Thompson, Kate PSG 23:35.60; 27. Odden, Clara KTN 23:40.51; 28. Yerkes, Ellie JDHS 23:56.31; 29. Poulson, Addie SIT 23:57.29; 30. Sakamoto Quezon, Alexus PSG 23:57.98; 31. King, Malia KTN 24:06.65; 32. Boehlert, Maggie KTN 24:07.14; 33. Crupi, Serena JDHS 24:08.32; 34. Bauer, Aspen KTN 24:40.44; 35. Johnson, Lexi KLWK 24:41.71; 36. Gologergen, Jelsey MEHS 24:55.12; 37. Chapell, Sally HNS 25:18.44; 38. Hudson, Cerys JDHS 25:22.74; 39. Haight, Ruchi TMHS 25:27.50; 40. Ganey, Ashlyn HNS 25:42.29; 41. Bioff, Aries MEHS 25:50.48; 42. Young, Maitlin SIT 26:06.37; 43. Wiederspohn, Mia WRG 26:55.71; 44. Toyomura, Deirdre PSG 27:34.36; 45. Bahnke, Sarah MEHS 27:40.59; 46. Aparezuk-Schlosser, Tali JDHS 28:28.29; 47. Nanouk-Jones, Sarah MEHS 28:51.65; 48. Beans, Makenna MEHS 29:56.49; 49. Tronrund, Kaitlyn SKG 30:02.35; 50. Rexford, Ashley MEHS 30:13.12; 51. Day, Rachael PSG 30:13.47; 52. Moses, Hailey MEHS 30:19.71; 53. Hoppe, Isabella KLWK 30:36.94; 54. Martinsen, Emma WRG 31:09.88; 55. Jordan, Athena MET 32:06.73; 56. Jackson, Izzy MEHS 32:22.62; 57. Mendonsa, Nichole TB 32:40.86; 58. Hedges, Hailey KLWK 32:50.43; 59. Chelette, Rylee WRG 36:16.59; 60. Pablos, Clara TB 37:43.98.

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