For the third straight year, Bellingham junior Annika Reiss finished among the top four at the Class 2A Girls Cross Country State Championships, as she placed second Saturday at the Sun Willows Golf Course in Pasco with a time of 18 minutes, 6.50 seconds.
Perhaps even more important to Reiss was seeing her team place third with 108 points, just seven behind champion Sehome and one behind Spokane West Valley.
“It means a lot to us, because we’re a close team,” Reiss said. “We’ve been pushing each other in workouts a lot, but we’re also best friends, so it’s good to be able to share this up on the podium with them.”
Reiss attributed her individual performance, in part, to working and being pushed by Sedro-Woolley’s Kristen Garcia, who won the state title in 17:52.90.
“We dropped all the girls right at the beginning and worked together through the first mile,” Reiss said. “The competition was super, and the push I got from her was awesome. That last mile she just pulled away. At the end, I found a kick, but she kicked harder.”
Red Raider teammates Grace Much (23rd) and Livi Lackland Henry (24th) joined Reiss in the top 25, while Zoe Thompson was 44th.
Blaine’s Jamie Good, who was running individually, finished 145th.
Class 3A girls: Ferndale freshman Jaclyn Denham turned in a strong performance as the only Whatcom County Class 3A runner to advance to state. She placed 42nd in 19:24.0.
Class 2A girls results
Livi Lackland Henry
Class 3A girls results