State Meet Report


It was a memorable event for Polson cross country yesterday at the state championship meet in Helena. It felt very satisfying to watch so many great runs after all the hard work this year.

The boys set the stage in the first race of the day by finishing 6th place as a team. They were also only one point from Hardin in 5th place. As far as I know, this is the highest state finish by a Pirate boys team since they finished 4th in 2004. Quin led the way with a breakthrough performance, mowing down the field in the second half of the race to take 7th place and earn his first All State honors. No Pirate boy runner has achieved All State since Logan Torgison finished 2nd in 2007. Behind Quin, Jonah ran the race of his life to finish 26th and Mason was the 2nd fastest freshman in Class A. Andrew again wowed the spectators with his ferocious finishing kick and Zach ran very tough to round out the scoring for Polson in his final XC race.

Then it was the girls turn to take on the course and a thrilling battle for the team title. They stuck to the plan and showed great composure by holding back during a very fast start. Then it was time to move. Bea and Naima rolled through the field like a purple way and Molly wasn't far behind. Bea's final mile was exactly the unbeatable 6:00 that she had prepared for and she convincingly earned the state title that has been her goal since her freshman track season. Just as Bea's victory was the culmination of years of dedicated training, Naima's amazing third place finish (up from 21st last year) was a glorious finale to her Pirate cross country career. Molly also ran her best race of the year to add a third all-state Polson girl in 14th. But the magic didn't stop there. Nina managed to throw aside what has been a frustrating freshman season and rise to a new level on the big stage. She moved to the lead of Polson's second wave and finished in 39th place. Gwen also put forth a huge effort to finish 44th and wrap up the Polson scoring.

Though Polson moved up dramatically in the second half, Hardin's top five managed to all stay in the top 18 and that was enough to easily defend their team title. Polson ended up in a tie with Corvallis for second place. The tie breaker went to Corvallis' sixth runner on a very deep team, but the Pirates were still pleased to have run well and come away with a third place trophy.

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