Western alum places ninth at Boston 5K


Former Western Washington University cross country and track all-American Sarah Crouch (formerly Sarah Porter) finished 49th overall and was the ninth women's runner to complete the 5-kilometer race associated with the Boston Marathon on Monday, April 15.

Her time of 16 minutes, 25 seconds was second in her division.

Crouch ran the race with her husband, Michael, who placed 17th and was also second in his division.

Neither was hurt in the two bombings near the finish line of the marathon that killed three people and injured more than 170, but they were obviously affected by the events.

"I just wanted to say thank you for the outpouring of concern and love Michael and I received while we were in Boston," Crouch wrote on her Facebook page. "We are home now, and somehow, it doesn't seem real. It seems as though I would turn to Michael this morning and say, 'I had the craziest dream about bombs going off during the Boston Marathon.'

"I feel that 9/11 stole the innocence of my generation, but this... this horrific display of hatred, it has stolen the innocence of my beloved sport. It has forever tainted what is supposed to be a celebration of the indomitable will of the human spirit and has replaced it with fear.

"It doesn't seem right that I should wake up this morning to birds chirping and the first buds of spring, but you know what I'm going to do today? I'm going to run. And every step I take will be in defiance of the people who are trying to take my freedom from me."


Linfield College senior Brinn Hovde (Squalicum) won medalist honors for the second time in her career, as she shared first place at the Willamette Cup on a soggy, breezy day Sunday, April 14, at Quail Valley Golf Course.

Hovde carded a 14-over 86 to tie with Willamette's Mckenzie Weinhold and has still finished below 90 at every tournament she has played this spring.

The Bearcats won the three-team tournament, as junior Alexandria Smith (Bellingham) placed sixth with an 89.

The team next heads to the Northwest Conference Championships Friday and Saturday, April 19-20, at the Oregon Golf Association Golf Course in Woodburn. The tournament counts 50 percent toward determining the league champion.

"After this weekend we all feel we have room for improvement and are excited to practice this week and apply what we work on at the conference tournament," Hovde said in a school press release. "We'll hopefully see our scores go down when it really counts."


Lower Columbia sophomore short stop Zach Slesk (Meridian) had a pair of hits in a 1-0 loss to Pierce College on Sunday. It was his second multi-hit game of the season.

Slesk is hitting .320 (33 for 103) this season with 18 runs scored and 11 RBI. He has 10 doubles and a homer and has swiped seven bases.

He has already signed a National Letter of Intent to play Division-I baseball next spring at Utah Valley University.


Whitman College junior leadoff batter Kyle Buckham (Bellingham) got an unusual infield single, stole second base and ended up scoring on a resulting error to give his team a 1-0 lead in the first inning on Saturday, April 13, but the Missionaries ended up being swept in a doubleheader against Willamette. The outfielder finished 2 for 5 in the game and 3 for 5 in an 8-5 loss to Willamette on Sunday.

Buckham is second on the team with his .308 average (37 for 120) and is third in the Northwest Conference with 14 stolen basses. He's also scored 26 runs and has 10 RBI.


Northwestern College sophomore catcher Jill Kleinhesselink (Lynden Christian) went 1 for 4 with a double and a run scored to help the Red Raiders to a 10-2 win over Nebraska Wesleyan on Sunday. She went 1 for 3 with another double and run scored in a 3-2 loss in the first game of the doubleheader.

Kleinhesselink is second on the team with a .333 average (41 for 123). She has nine doubles, two triples and four homers and has scored 34 runs and driven in 18. She's also stolen 35 bases in 39 attempts.


George Fox University senior Molly Beaumont (Bellingham) combined with playing partner Shaina Inn to beat Willamette's Denise Poltavaski and Sabrina Gutierrez 8-5 in a doubles tennis match on Saturday to help her team to a 5-4 victory.

Beaumont fell 6-1, 6-1 to Poltavaski in her No. 1 singles match.

Beaumont and Inn are 13-5 in doubles matches this year, including 9-3 in Northwest Conference matches.

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