Cottage Grove cross country battled the other teams in their league last Thursday for the Sky-Em league district championships. The prohibitive favorite on the boys’ side, Siuslaw would take care of business holding down first place. But the real intrigue was for the second spot as two teams from each district qualify for the state meet the following Saturday. Marist and Cottage Grove had battled earlier in the season with both times the Lions getting the best of the Spartans. Thursday would be no different as the Cottage Grove boys team would beat Marist by 20 points to qualify for the state meet on Saturday, Nov. 6. The finishers for the boys team included Jayden Owens (17:16), Carter Bengston (17:17), Ethan Peterson (17:51), Carter Parsons (18:29), and Rafael Fields (19:06) rounded out the top five for the boys. On the girls’ side, Marist and Siuslaw went first and second in the team finishes allowing them to qualify for state. Cottage Grove, despite some injuries, would finish third ahead of Junction City with 80 points. Top finishers for the girls team included Bella Keating (22:19), Piper Youngmyer (23:35), Evie Smith (24:15), Helen Leal-Coronel (24:42.10), and Grace Sisson (24:42.50).
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