With the finish line in sight, Meridian’s Derek Morrow took off from the top of a hill at South Whidbey High School from his 11th-place position. He passed a runner on the track and finished seventh-place overall.
To the team, his strong final kick may have seemed insignificant at the time, but when the team results where posted, his move ended up making a tremendous difference.
The Trojans edged Northwest by one point, taking second place while qualifying for state during the Class 1A Bi-District Championships Meet Saturday, Nov. 1, in Langley.
“Wow, can’t say enough,” Meridian coach Mike Holz said of Morrow in a phone interview. “In the last 300 (meters) he passed another kid and we get second by a point. It’s the little things that you never know.”
Morrow was just one of several strong Meridian performances Saturday.
Senior Collin Magnusson settled for third place with a run of 16 minutes, 39.33 seconds. Morrow finished in 17:22.81, Riley Hawkins-Hecock took 25th (18:12.72), Derek Holz was 27th (18:16.92) and Levi Morrow finished 29th (18:21.13).
King’s won the team title with 53 points, Lynden Christian was the next closest county team behind Meridian. The Lyncs finished sixth with 157 points, Mount Baker was ninth with 230 and Nooksack Valley was 10th with 236.
Beyond Meridian, both Mount Baker’s Jesse Phan and Lynden Christian’s Josh Lingbloom ran well enough to qualify for 1A state individually.
Phan finished in 10th place with a time of 17:33.26, and Lingbloom dramatically took the last qualifying spot, 20th, with a time of 17:54.30.
“Josh Lingbloom got the 20th spot, and he had to pass three people on the last 300 yards,” Lynden Christian coach Darren Postma said in a phone interview. “The last guy he passed was in the final 10-15 yards.”
The Class 1A State Championships Meet is scheduled for a noon start Saturday, Nov. 8, in Pasco.
CLASS 1A BI-DISTRICT CHAMPIONSHIPS
At South Whidbey