Idaho trip earns local runners experience against the best in the West
Chugiak High runner Hyrum Nelson was the second Alaskan and 60th overall Saturday at the Nike Cross Northwest cross-country races at Eagle Island State Park near Boise, Idaho.
Nelson finished the 5-kilometer course in 16 minutes, 14 seconds.
Chugiak’s Breanna Day finished in 20:18 to place 143rd in the girls race.
A total of 13 high schoolers and four middle schoolers from Alaska took part in the annual races, which featured some of the best young runners from Alaska, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington and Wyoming.
Local middle-schoolers Emersyn Brewer, Emily Moore, Skyler Belmear and Ellen Kruchoski competed and all four finished in the top 25 among middle school girls in the 3-kilometer middle school race. Brewer finished ninth among girls and 61st overall, with Moore 10th among girls and 64th overall. Belmear was 82nd overall and Kruchoski finished 110th.
Anchorage’s Tristian Merchant, a senior at Anchorage Christian Schools, led the way among the Alaska contingent, placing sixth in the boys race to earn a spot in the Nike Cross Nationals next month in Portland. Merchant became the first Alaska boy to qualify for nationals since Kodiak’s Levi Thomet in 2014.