SPORTS: Port Angeles boys cross country team wins Fort Worden Invitational

PORT TOWNSEND — The Roberts family continued its cross country brilliance, and the Port Angeles boys proved themselves up-and-comers at a fast-paced Fort Worden Invitational on Saturday.

The Roughriders won the boys race with Nick Shindler capturing second place at the seven-team event held at Fort Worden State Park.

Port Angeles had four runners finish in the top 10 with the fifth runner 18th to overcome Olympic taking first and third.

In the girls race, the Roberts sisters of Kingston kept piling up the hardware as second sister Marina Roberts broke the course record with a time of 16 minutes, 49 seconds on the 2.9-mile track.

Meanwhile, her little sister, Annie, was way back in second at 18:18.

Oldest sister, Ruby, dominated cross country for years, winning state, league and regional titles before moving on to run for Washington State.

It was all Port Angeles in the boys race, though, as Olympic’s Matthew Lutz nosed out Shindler 15:27 to 15:33 for first.

Shindler was sandwiched by Olympic as Ian Goldizen took third in 15:43.

“Nick went out hard, challenging Matthew Lutz,” Rider coach Pat Durr said.

The Riders easily won with 47 points to Liberty-Issaquah’s 80 and Olympic’s 83.

Port Angeles bunched up three runners in the top 10 to get the edge for first as Brendan Dennis took eighth, Kyle Tupper was ninth and Michael Ahrens claimed 10th.

Evan Herbert, the Riders’ No. 5 runner, took 18th place, only 30 seconds behind his teammates.

“We ran there two weeks ago, and so our kids knew the course,” Durr said. “I expected us to run 10 to 12 seconds faster.

“We have been training hard, logging 70 to 75 miles a week, and that is paying off.”

The key to winning was running as a pack, Durr said.

“We were able to run as a pack early and that pushes the kids along,” he said.

Liberty-Issaquah had its best five runners finish in the top 24 to nudge out Olympic for second place.

Xavier Frank was Port Townsend’s top runner as he finished seventh (15:56).

The Redskins’ top five all finished in the top 30 as they captured fourth overall with 91 points.

Former Port Townsend ace cross country runner Bereket Piatt — the 2009 1A state champion — won the male open race with a time of 14:52.

Marina Roberts shattered the old course record of 17:15 by Central Kitsap’s Shannon Moskowitz in the girls race.

Kingston took the three top spots, but Liberty-Issaquah claimed the next three positions and had five runners finish in the top 10 to win team honors with 34 points.

Kingston was runner-up with 49 while Port Angeles finished in third with 103.

The Redskins were fifth with 123.

Elizabeth Stevenson was the first Rider across the finish line in eighth place (19:11.)

Port Townsend’s Brittany Grant was 15th in 19:45.

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