Sitka High School’s pack of state champion Wolves took the team title on the boys side for Southeast’s small schools. Seniors David Wilcox and Colin Bacaccio, who finished first and second respectively, have been pushing one another at Region V meets for years.
Saturday was no different, with Wilcox outkicking Bacaccio 0at the finish for a 16:47.30 to Bacaccio’s 16:49.90.
“The first mile we were going too fast, so I feel bad about it but I backed off a bit,” said Wilcox, who’s undefeated at Region V meets this year. “It felt like a 16:30 time, and I didn’t think we could keep that up, and I didn’t want to risk it.”
Joe Pate, Connor Buxton and Skylar McIntyre also finished in the top 10 for the Wolves boys. Wilcox said his team’s chances at state are going to be good this year, but the competition will be stiffer.
Wrangell’s Reyn Hutton finished first for the girls with the Petersburg girls taking team first place. Hutton ran in front of a pack of Petersburg girls, four of whom finished in the top 10.
Hutton’s pacing helped her stay out front.
“I am really lucky in that I have a pace that I can really feel,” Hutton said. “I will usually keep that pace throughout the whole thing. When the coaches say ‘she’s right behind you’ I try not to let it get to me beca0use if you do, you can go too fast and burn out.”
For the Petersburg girls, who took team first, it’s all about sticking together.
“We stay together,” said Petersburg’s Kayleigh Eddy, adding that her teammates push her as much as a girl from another team would.
“This is the first time Shyla (Cook, third place finisher) has come in right behind me, normally it’s Melanie Chase,” Eddy said. “This time, she pushed me the whole way. She kept yelling at me to keep going.”
To see the results in full, view this story online at juneauempire.com.
• Contact reporter Kevin Gullufsen at 523-2279 or firstname.lastname@example.org.