Team of the YearFerris – The Saxons graduated 5 from last 2009’s NXN runners-up team but were able to re-build to an eventual 4th place at State
Lewis & Clark – Going into the 2010 season the Tigers were over shadowed by the 3A favorites NC and University, and the traditional 4A powers Mead and Ferris, but they raced solid all year, just missing the Titans in the GSL dual by a point, upsetting NC at Firman, and tying IKE at Regionals. They missed the 4A State title to IKE by nine but got them back the next week at NXN Regional qualifying for Nationals where they placed 15th.
North Central – With a solid group of seniors and superstar group of youngsters, NC had a slow start in 2010, winning at Walters but not impressively, and placing third at Firman. However by October they started to jell and mowed through GSL, Districts, Regionals, State, and NXN Regionals. They finished sixth in their fourth straight trip to Nationals.
University – Came into the 2010 campaign as one of the favorites to knock off NC in GSL and State competition. The Titans had a great September flexing their muscle at Meadlander, Nike Pre-Nationals where they were the best team from NW beating the top Oregon schools, and GSL competition where they slipped by LC and dominated Mead at Liberty Lake. They finished second at GSL Districts, Regionals, and 3A State.
Break on Through Team: Ferris – The Saxons end-of-season run has become a common occurrence, and this year was no exception. They performed solid in September during GSL competition and invites such at Stanford and Pre-Nationals but really started to turn heads in October when they handily beat Mt Spokane, Regionals, and State.
Lewis & Clark - Midway through the season it appeared that Eisenhower was going to dominate at Regionals and State but the LC stepped up to challenge the Cadets falling just shy in both races. They stepped up furthers beating everyone at NXN Regionals except NC and earning a trip to Portland.
Shadle Park – The Highlanders didn’t improve so much in place in GSL but in competitive level and attitude. They had high places at invites such as Farragut and D1 at Nike Pre-Nats. They went out after their GSL rivals in weekly duals falling shy but making a statement.
University – The Titans went from a league fifth place finish in 2009 to GSL and State favorites even though they had not raced in Pasco since 2001. They rose to the occasion despite their lack of State experience finishing 2nd.
Animal of the Year: Andrew Gardner (Mead) – Gardner started his sophomore year on a tear, winning the inaugural Meadlander, Mt West (with a top 3 all-time finish), and Wenatchee where he set course record, He won the dual vs. Bierig then picked up a Regional championship, He finished 2nd State and was banged up during post season opting out of NXN Regionals and Border Clash. He came storming back in December finishing 2nd at FL Regionals, 4th at FL Nationals
Kenji Bierig (Lewis & Clark) – Bierig also had a great start winning the senior race at Meadlander, finishing 2nd Mt. West, and 2nd at Firman. He set course records at CV and at Manito where he finished ahead of Weitz. He stepped it up during the post season, finishing 2nd at Regionals and winning at State and NXN Regionals. He finished the season with an 8th place at NXN Nationals.
Nathan Weitz (Shadle Park) – The Highlander junior had a bookend style season by dominating the competition early with wins at Meadlander (setting a course record) and Nike Pre-nationals with the day’s best time. He struggled midseason where he finished 2nd to Bierig in a GSL dual, and 3rd at GSL Districts to Hamilton and Adams. He came back strong winning State and finishing 5th at FL Regionals, qualifying for Nationals.
Vince Hamilton (North Central) – Always a bridesmaid never a bridge describes the senior’s season, well almost never a bride. He finished 2nd at Tracy by a few seconds, 3rd at Firman, 2nd at Richland by a few seconds, and second to Gardner, and Bierig in GSL duals by a few seconds. He picked up a big win at GSL Districts against Adams and Weitz. Coming close again he finished 2nd at State, 3rd at Border Clash, and 2nd at NXN Regionals. He and teammate Casey Adams led NC to 6th place finish at NXN.
Break on Through IndividualAusten Frostad (North Central) – Every year NC has a guy that comes out of nowhere, so much so that I exclaim “who the is that?” This year it was the sophomore Frostad. He finished 11th in 09 GSL Frosh All-League and plays baseball in the spring, This fall he was instrumental in NC’s 2010 run to NXN. He finished 10th at Regionals, and 17th at State.
Ike Griffith (Lewis & Clark) – I saw Ike win the Millwood 5K right before the season started finishing just ahead of a couple of U-Hi Titans, and knew then he would be a key performer for the Tigers. In 2009 he finished 4th at JV All-League and ran a 17:35 for 5K. In 2010 was consistently in LC’s top 5 finishing 17th at Regionals, and 35th at State for the 4A runners-up Tigers.
Keith Williams (North Central) – In 09 Williams as All-World winning everything JV/Frosh thing there was to win. He struggled at the beginning of his sophomore season but progressively got better. He finished 9th at 3A Districts, 12th at Regionals, and 12th at State earning a podium finish.
Sumner Goodwin (Lewis & Clark) – Goodwin’s improvement was also key in LC’s run to State and NXN. In 2009 he finished 3rd in the GSL Frosh All-League. This year he was a permanent fixture in LC’s top 5 finishing 2nd Meadlander, 12th at Mt. West, and 26th at Firman. He finished 47th at helping the Tigers earn the second place trophy..
Rookie of the YearAntonio Fuentes (Lewis & Clark) – The Tiger freshman started slow with an 18th place at Bullpup, but came on strong at the Frosh All-League finishing 3rd.
Corey Hunter (Central Valley) – Hunter spent the early part of the season running JV/Frosh race but the freshman did see some varsity action. He finished 6th at Meadlander, 1st at Bullpup (frosh race) and was the GSL Frosh Champion that performance earned him some varsity action at Regionals where he finished 39th.
Kai Wilmont (North Central) – The freshman from NC was part of a mixed squad for the GSL Champs who fielded a team of three seniors, three sophomores, and a freshman – Wilmont. He finished 20th at Tracy Walters, 24th at Richland, and had a key performance vs. LC with an ailing Williams. He was the top freshman at State finishing 38th and at NXN.
Matt Hommel (Central Valley) – Hommel and teammate Hunter gave the Bears a strong freshman 1 – 2 punch. Hommel finished 7th at Meadlander, 2nd at Bullpup, and 4th at GSL Frosh All-League helping CV to their second Frosh title.
Taylor Smith (University) – Smith, a freshman, ran consistently all season finshing 5th at Meadlander, 3rd at Sunfair. He finished up with a 2nd place finish at GSL Frosh All-League.
Coach of the YearJon Knight (North Central) – NC entered the 2010 as the RT favorite to win the GSL and State with a mixed group of runners. Coach Knight was able to re-load with sophomores and a frosh to complement the three veteran seniors. He guided his team to their fifth straight State title, fourth NXN Regional title, and fourth top seven NXN finish.
Mike Barbero (University) – The Titans made the biggest jump in the GLS standing from 2009 moving from fifth to second in 2010. They were the GSL hopeful to upend NC’s reign with their senior dominated squad. Though they fell short, Barbero guided his team to 4th place finish at Nike Pre-Nationals as the top NW team; and second place GSL and Regional finish. The Titans finished second at State in their first appearance since 2001.
Mike Lee (Lewis & Clark) – The Tigers just missed the podium in 2009 and were favored top 4A team in the GSL. Coach Lee guided the Tigers to far exceed the pundit’s expectations. They finished ahead of NC at Firman, and raced IKE to a tie at Regionals but lost the tie-breaker to the eventual State Champions. They finished 9 points shy of beating the Cadets at State, which would have made Coach Lee one of the youngest coaches to win the “big school” classification. They got revenge on the Cadets the next week at NXN Regionals earning a trip to Nationals.
Mike Hadway (Ferris) – The Magic Man does it again! The Saxons graduated 5 from the 09 NXN second place team. He was able guide a mixed group of seniors, juniors, and sophomores back to the State meet with a strong surge in October. They finished on the podium at State with a fourth place finish.