OYHUT - Foreign exchange student Takumi Soto's 11th place finish led the Naselle Comets cross country team to a third place finish in an eight team meet held at North Beach High School Thursday, Oct. 17.
Sato ran the 3.1-mile course in 20:04 to help NHS score 110 points for third place. Montesano won the meet with 39 points and Toledo was second.
The other four NHS runners, whose times figured in the Naselle score were: Nate Moore (21st, 20:41), Cory Teubner (22nd, 20:48), Zach Badger (25th, 21:02), and Evan Hendrickson (31st, 21:47).
Also finishing for NHS were: Ryan Nortrup (35th, 22:51) and Keegan McGuire (38th, 23:25); Brandon Wirkkala (39th, 23:26); Brian Beaulaurier (43rd, 24:18); Sean Houghton (44th, 24:36); Aoy Marion (45th, 24:39); Matt Queral (48th, 28:55); and Nick Kato (50th, 32:16).
"All 13 of our runners ran well and finished well," said coach Ryan Bjornsgard. "We finished third overall as a team and our runners are learning to run as a team up to about the two mile mark. Now we need to work on finishing strong."
Erin Saari finally lost her first race of the season when she finished second in 11:10 to Onalaska's Lea Stratton who ran the 1.6-mile junior high course in 11:01. Stratton is undefeated for the year and it appears likely that Saari and Stratton will battle it out again in the league meet to be held Thursday at Ocosta High School.
The high school league meet will also be at Ocosta High School on Thursday. The top six boys on a team will advance to the varsity district meet to be held at Chehalis. The finishers after the sixth place runner on a team will advance to the junior varsity district meet, also at Chehalis.