When the dust settled on all eight of the Nike Cross National regional races, Gateway’s Yasin Sado ended up with a trip to Portland, Oregon, in his future.
The Olys’ senior finished in sixth place at the Southwest Regional meet Nov. 23 in Casa Grande, Arizona, with just 0.42 of a second keeping him from the automatic bid to the Dec. 7 national meet in Portland, which go to the top five individual finishers and the top two teams.
At-large bid were extended following the last three regionals contested on Nov. 30, with one of the team at-large bids going to Colorado’s Dakota Ridge. One of the Eagles’ runners — senior Connor Ohlson — finished in the No. 4 spot individually, but he came off the list thanks to the team invitation, allowing Sado (who ran a time of 14 minutes, 58.43 seconds) to have his individual spot for the NXN Boys Championship race, slated for 10:05 a.m. Dec. 7 on the Glendoveer G.C.
Sado heads out to Oregon Thursday, the day before Gateway cross country coach Charles Moss joins him.
Cherokee Trail also has an individual set to run in the NXN Girls Championship race (set for 11:35 a.m. Dec. 7) in sophomore Cameron McConnell.
McConnell grabbed a relatively comfortable fifth place in the Southwest Regional race in 17:20.62. That race was won by Cherry Creek’s Riley Stewart, the 5A state champion who also qualified for the Foot Locker National Championship race as well.
Colorado will be well-represented in both championship races.
The boys race includes two teams — Mountain Vista and Dakota Ridge — plus Valor Christian’s Cole Sprout (the regional champion), Niwot’s Cruz Culpepper and Thompson Valley’s Dylan Schubert, while the girls race also features two Colorado teams in Valor Christian and newly-added Niwot along with McConnell and Stewart.
Courtney Oakes is Sentinel Colorado Sports Editor. Reach him at 303-750-7555 or [email protected] Twitter: @aurorasports. IG: Sentinel Prep Sports