POCATELLO – A week that began with a lot of promise probably ended with some disappointment at the state cross country championships.

On a Portneuf Wellness course that still had snow in places and where the temperature was in the low 40s, times just weren't what was expected and played with the psyche of many of the runners who were expecting better, not only for themselves as individuals, but for their teams as well.

It was expected that the boys' team from Snake River could finish as high as second and could have an individual champion and that transpired to a third place team placing and an individual fourth place finish for star runner Lorenzo High, who was followed across the finish line in ninth place by younger brother Lincoln. That was the best that anyone from Bingham County was able to muster on the cool, winter-like day at the Portneuf Wellness Complex in Pocatello.

The girls' team from Snake River was also considered a threat to cash in with a high team finish, but couldn't continue the trend of improvement that individual runners had been producing and ended up in sixth position, a good finish, just not what the team was hoping for.

Where it was thought that there might be as many as three Panther girls who could earn medals, only Kierra Jensen made the medal stand and she was 20th in the field.

Individually, Jensen was the the top Panther finisher among the girls at 20th, but it was a personal best for Jensen and she was followed closely by Rachel Stokes who also produced a personal best time, that was good enough for 21st place. Unfortunately, the state meet only medals the top 20, so good news for Jensen, bad news for Stokes.

In the 4A classification, it was hoped that the Blackfoot boys, who had been on a roll of late, could check in with a team finish good enough to bring home a trophy. Not this time around, as the best individual finish was by Eli Gregory in 30th. He was followed by Austin DeSpain in 31st and Justin Whitehead in 31st as the three finished together, less than a tenth of a second apart. It just wasn't good enough as the team finished sixth out of the field of 15. Nate Blackwelder and Matt Thomas completed the five runners for Blackfoot.

For the girls' side of things in the 4A classification, Shelley was hoping to build on the third place finish from district, but it wasn't to be as they would finish 11th overall out of 15 teams, led by junior Clara Benson, who finished in 53rd place.

For the 2A individuals, again there were some personal bests, but when you are racing against the elite runners in the state, personal bests are not always good enough to earn medals.

Caleb Gardner finished in 26th place and Nicole McKinnon was 41st for the girls, both good finishes for the pair, just not good enough to earn a medal and some accolades that both probably deserved.

4A Boys' Team Event

Idaho Falls 54

Preston 75

Kuna 77

Pocatello 142

Sandpoint 168

Blackfoot 172 (15 teams recorded team scores)



30. Eli Gregory 16:24.66

31. Austin DeSpain 16:24.73

32. Justin Whitehead 16:24.76

50. Nate Blackwelder 16:55.39

51. Matt Thomas 16:56.15

86. Brock Armstrong 17:43.18

94. Paden Parmenter 18:02.76

4A Girls' Team Event

Idaho Falls 65

Bishop Kelly 88

Twin Falls 114

Skyline 143

Kuna 147

Pocatello 152 (15 teams recorded scores)

Shelley (11th) 269



53. Clara Benson 20:51.81

57. Katelyn Benson 20:55.38

61. Amy Nield 21:01.20

67. Jessica Williams 21:13.37

73. Abbie Adams 21:21.77

92. Lucy Christensen 21:56.73

109. Kira Anderson 23:11.55

3A Boys' Team Scores

Sugar-Salem 36

Gooding 79

Snake River 103

Teton 133

Timberlake 136

Parma 146


Snake River

4. Lorenzo High 16:24.54

9. Lincoln High 16:54.36

25. Rylan Anderson 17:51.51

29. Cade Morgan 17:55.90

42. Brock Goodwin 18:28.90

44. Nathan Adams 18:31.09

52. Cameren Hardy 18:46.33

3A Girls' Team Scores

Sugar-Salem 27

Timberlake 98

Filer 106

Kimberly 118

Teton 121

Snake River 128 (10 teams recorded scores)


Snake River

20. Kierra Jensen 20:51.28

21. Rachel Stokes 20:52.35

34. Kylee Morgan 21:44.49

41. Emma Perkes 22:26.05

42. Aubrie Reed 22:28.69

48. Alivia Reed 22:48.66

52. Morgan Sensenbach 23:08.88

2A Boys' Team Scores

Salmon 22

Soda Springs 72

McCall Donnelly 108

West Side 112

Cole Valley Christian 117

Melba 153

North Fremont 161

Declo 197



26. Caleb Gardner 17:20.10

2A Girls' Team Scores

Soda Springs 49

Bear Lake 67

Salmon 90

Melba 102

McCall Donnelly 109

Cole Valley Christian 143

West Jefferson 175

Ririe 195

Declo 228



41. Nicole McKinnon 21:45.07