Mount Si Cross County made history, Nov. 7 when both the boys and girls teams competed at the state championships in Pasco, for the first time in decades.
Sean Sundwall, assistant cross country coach at Mount Si High School, gave some statistics on how long it’s been since both teams made it to State.
“The last time the boys, went to state as a team was in 1973, 42 years ago. It was the third largest drought in state history in boys cross country,” Sundwall said.
The last time the girls team qualified was in 1977, 38 years ago; that was the longest gap in state girls cross country history.
To qualify for state, both teams needed to place well in the bi-district event, an event that brings the top 17 schools in King and Snohomish counties to one meet.
In 2014, the girls cross country team finished fifth at Kingco, ninth at bi-districts and sent only Hannah Waskom, then a sophomore, to state. This year, they placed first in both Kingco and bi-districts, and tied for second at state, but ended up in third after losing a tiebreaker.
Christine Kjenner, cross country coach at Mount Si High School, said that they only lost the tie breaker by one point.
“Cross country is scored by the place finish of your top five,” Kjenner said. “When there is a tie they go to sixth place, Lewis and Clark High School beat them by one point.”
Waskom placed second overall in the event with Melissa Hruska and Lindsey Sydnor placing in the top 25.
“Both Hannah and Melissa had their personal record for the 5K at state,” Kjenner said.
This year the boys team finished seventh at Kingo, with Joe Waskom setting the fastest time in 17 years in all of Kingco. The team was able to reach the fourth place spot at bi-districts, claiming the last qualifying spot for state, narrowly beating out Skyline by three points.
“We did it without our number-two and -four runners and still qualified,” Sundwall said. “Each one of them, on a horrible weather day, performed out of their minds.”
The boys finished 11th overall at state, with Joe Waskom placing 18th, which is the sixth best placement in state history for a freshman.
“It’s always been a dream of ours to get a team to state,” Kjenner said. “To get both of them the same year is unimaginable.”
The Mount Si High School girls cross country team from left, Addie Kaess, Hailey Hammer, Julene McDonald, Lindsey Sydnor, Chloe Cosgrove, Hannah Waskom, Lexi Winter, Ellie Bruce, Melissa Hruska (kneeling).
The boys cross country team from left, Alex Helfrich, Jonny Gendro, Jackson Stokes, Tanner Sundwall, Joe Waskom, Ryan Moore, Spencer Sprague, Kian Carson, and Willy Betz.