Junior Chase Caulkins continued to challenge the leaders. Senior Julia Bowman finished her Wood River High School cross country career in fine style Saturday at the State 4A cross country meets in Eagle.
Caulkins and Bowman, the top Wood River High School runners all season, paced the 10 Wolverine state qualifiers guided by coaches Joel Zellers, Monte Brothwell and Shari Kunz on the 3.1-mile Eagle Island State Park course.
"The weather held on to make almost perfect conditions," said Brothwell. "Both teams ran their best times all year."
A total 730 Gem State runners, 347 girls and 383 boys, took part in four divisions based on enrollment. Hailey's girls (218 points) fielded a full team of seven and ended in ninth place of 12 teams.
Caulkins, 12th at state in 2007 at Idaho Falls, was 54 seconds faster at state compared to last year and moved all the way up to sixth of 92 4A runners with a time of 16:24. The 4A winner in the fastest boys' time of the day was Columbia senior Barak Watson in 15:39.
Bowman (20:25) turned on the afterburners and improved her state time from last year by 18 seconds. In a fast field she was 24th of 92 runners. The winner was Bishop Kelly freshman Emily Nist (18:20) over defending champ Megan Bartlett, a Sandpoint senior clocked in 18:27.
The Bishop Kelly boys (78 points), the 2001 and 2005 champion, outdistanced defending champion Preston (87) for the 4A boys' title. In the girls' team standings, Preston (52) slipped past Kuna (55) for its first-ever girls' title, with five-time defending champ Bishop Kelly (61) in third place and Wood River ninth.
In 3A, the Bear Lake girls (36 points) won their sixth straight state championship by a 69-point margin over runner-up Kimberly. The Teton boys (77 points) carried the state first-place trophy back to Driggs for the first time, by 38 points over Sugar-Salem of Sugar City (115).
Coach Tracy Harris' Mountain View girls (92 points) captured their first-ever 5A title, dethroning three-time defending champ Boise. Medalist with the fastest girls' time was Eagle's Liz Brandon (18:08).
The only runner successfully defending a state title Saturday was Boise junior Eric Fitzpatrick (15:46), but Twin Falls (78 points) made it two straight State 5A boys' titles over 2005 winner Boise (97).
Top results and WRHS runners from the state meet:
State 4A girls' teams: 1—Preston 52. 2—Kuna 55. 9—Wood River 218 (12 schools).
State 4A girls: 1—Emily Nist (Bishop Kelly) 18:20. 24—Julia Bowman 20:25. 44—Corrine Smith 21:20. 48—Tristen Bowers 21:33. 65—Chelsey Souligny 23:00. 67—Brooke Bowers 23:07. 70—Clarice Stevens 23:12. 71—Allie Freund 23:28 (92 runners).
State 4A boys' teams: 1—Bishop Kelly 78. 2—Preston 87 (12 schools).
State 4A boys: 1—Barak Watson (Columbia) 15:39. 6—Chase Caulkins 16:24. 21—James Paris 17:06. 49—Daniel Sundali 17:47 (92 runners).
Trophy for Cutthroat boys at state cross country
Eleven Community School cross country runners competed in Saturday's Idaho State Cross Country meet on a 3.1-mile course at Eagle Island State Park west of Boise.
And seven of those state qualifiers hadn't made the trip to the Idaho High School Activities Association/United Dairymen of Idaho footrace in Idaho Falls last year.
But 2008 was a year of accomplishment for coach Rick Kapala and Chris Mallory's Cutthroats, including district championships for both the boys' and girls' thinclad teams.
And the Cutthroats added one more distinction on a mild day Saturday west of Boise, winning the fourth-place boys' team trophy by placing four runners in the top 38 of the 111-runner 2A/1A boys' race.
Senior Sam Farnham (17:31) led the way in 12th place 68 seconds behind undefeated Firth sophomore and new state champion Caden Portela (16:23, a winner by 16 seconds).
The Cutthroat boys (140 points) were fourth behind Firth (58), West Side of Dayton (59) and Soda Springs (109). Firth won its 11th state title in 12 years, derailing West Side's bid for a first-ever state cross country title, but the one-point margin was the closest of all eight divisions.
A key factor in the team accomplishment was junior Tanner Flanigan coming to the team after soccer season and giving Sun Valley a fifth boy so the team could qualify for team honors at district and state.
Sophomore Emily Williams (22:12) paced the Cutthroat girls in 38th place of 101 runners. The new 2A/1A girls' champion was Culdesac sophomore Taylor Hewett (19:27).
The Cutthroat girls nearly came home with another trophy. They finished in fifth of 13 teams, just out of the hardware category that gave trophies to the top four girls' and boys' teams in each of four divisions.
Soda Springs (51) won its third straight girls' team title by nine points over 2002-05 winner Firth.
Top results and those of the Cutthroat runners follow from Saturday's State 2A/1A meet in Eagle:
State A/1A boys: 1—Caden Portela (Firth) 16:23. 12—Sam Farnham 17:31. 26—Sean Dumke 18:05. 37—Torin Tucker 18:18. 38—Scotty Phelan 18:23. 69—Tanner Flanigan 19:24 (111 runners).
State 2A/1A boys' team scores: 1—Firth 58. 2—West Side 59. 3—Soda Springs 109. 4—Community School 140. 5—Melba 149 (13 schools).
State 2A/1A girls: 1—Taylor Hewett (Culdesac) 19:27. 38—Emily Williams 22:12. 41—Morgan Atkinson 22:20. 47—Bronwen Raff 22:34. 56—Courtney Hamilton 22:55. 72—Zana Davey 24:06. 78—Katie Dumke 24:53 (101 runners).
State 2A/1A girls' team scores: 1—Soda Springs 51. 2—Firth 60. 3—West Jefferson of Terreton 89. 4—Coeur d'Alene Charter 134. 5—Community School 179 (13 schools).