Summit sophomore Ella Hagen places 25th at Nike Cross National meet in Portland
Ella Hagen officially concluded her sophomore cross-country season with the biggest race of her young career at the Nike Cross Nationals meet at the Glendoveer Golf Course in Portland, Oregon, on Saturday, Dec. 3.
Hagen qualified for the national event after placing seventh at the Nike Southwest Regional meet in Mesa, Arizona, back in November.
Hagen came into the meet excited to race at the first national-level meet of her career. She took to the line with four other individual qualifiers from the Southwest region, three of whom also hail from Colorado.
A field of over 140 of the nation’s best female high school cross-country runners worked to position themselves in an ideal spot early in the race as a blustery wind ripped across the 5-kilometer course.
In the fury of arms and legs jockeying for position, Hagen took a tumble, but she didn’t not let the fall shake her mentally or physically. She sat in 50th place at around the 1 kilometer mark of the race and was in 49th place at the 1 mile mark, running her first mile in a time of 5 minutes 30.7 seconds.
From there she steadily moved up in the race, passing runner after runner in pursuit of the finish line. By the time the 2 mile mark came around, Hagen had fought her way through the wind to move up 16 spots to 33rd place, splitting 11:28.8 through 2 miles.
With a little over a mile to go, she continued to dig. With a large crowd of spectators cheering the race on, Hagen crossed the finish line in 25th place with a time of 17:50.4.
The race was won by the Southeast region’s Irene Riggs, of Morgantown, West Virginia, who finished in a time of 16:40.9. Colorado’s Brooke Wilson, from Valor Christian High School, placed second in 16:54.6 and Bethany Michalak from Air Academy High School placed third in 16:55.4.
Hagen will now rest up a bit before beginning the high school Nordic skiing season. She will look to improve upon last year’s Nordic skiing season where she placed fourth in both the skate and classic races at the Colorado High School Nordic Skiing Championships in Granby.
Remeikis brothers compete in Alabama race
On Saturday afternoon, senior Dom Remeikis raced at the Garmin RunningLane Cross-Country Championships in Huntsville, Alabama. While braving muddy conditions, Remeikis placed 67th in the boys gold race in a time of 15:58.3.
Additionally, current Summit Middle School eighth grader Lukas Remeikis ran 20:15.50 for 206th place in the boys white race.
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