Lady Bears runners finish first in Petersburg cross country meet


September 12, 2019

Carson Crager finishes on Sandy Beach in Petersburg, Alaska. Photo courtesy of the Petersburg Pilot.

For the second week in a row, the Glacier Bears girls finished first among 2A schools during its second meet of the season in Petersburg.

They finished third overall, only six points behind Ketchikan and three behind Thunder Mountain. As usual, Juneau-Douglas sent their varsity squad to the Palmer Invitational, something a Region 5 team is permitted to do as long as they enter a full team at the race held in Southeast on that weekend.

The boys finished three points down to 2A rival Petersburg, 109 to 112. They were sixth of 11 teams overall. Junior Carson Crager described the Petersburg course as his personal favorite. "It's two loops, starting with a long uphill. Then it turns into a narrow, flat trail where you can recover. It stays flat for a while, then it goes into a long, gradual downhill where you can run really fast without feeling like you're going to fall on your face. Then you cross the street and finish on the beach."

Crager had a strong race, finishing second for the team and eighteenth overall in 19:06, just two seconds off this personal record. He was proceeded by Siyel George, Carver Culbeck, Luke Davis, Mark Davis, Brennan Palmieri and Jayden Hotch.

In the girls race, the Glacier Bears had their top three finishers cross the line among the first eight runners, a feat unmatched in either race. Sophomore Avery Williamson stayed close behind Freshman Mackenzie Dryden and Grace Long-Godinez for most of the race before passing them on the final downhill. Williamson said, "Coach talks a lot about 'pack running'. I thought, if I pass those two, I can help them finish faster." Williamson finished fifth in 21:22, a personal best.

Dryden and Long-Godinez finished in a virtual tie for seventh, in 21:26. They were followed by a third freshman, Avari Getchell, then Juniors Hannah Boron, Lydia Andriesen and Haley Boron. Getchell Adriesen and the Borons all finished within a minute of one another and the entire team finished in the top 30.

It has been said that families make teams and teams make families and this year's team is a perfect example. The Glaciers Bears have seven sets of siblings on their roster and aspire to train, travel and compete as a large, happy extended family. Crager spoke about being joined on the team this year by his sister Natalie, a freshman. "It's really cool that there are so many sets of siblings on the team this year, it makes it even more like a family. (Before she joined) I told Natalie, it's a tough sport. There are a lot of long runs. You've just got to keep your mind clear. It's a mental game."

This Saturday, the Glacier Bears host their biannual home meet at the fairgrounds. The boys start at 1:45 p.m. and the girls start at 2:30 p.m. After the completion of the high school race, there will be a community race on the same course. The Haines middle school team will be competing in the community race.

Senior captain Marirose Evenden encourages everyone to check it out. "It's gonna be awesome. I'm excited. Seeing the next generation of runners as excited about the sport as I am makes me really happy."

Race Results:


11. Siyel George 18:32

18. Carson Crager 19:06

25. Carver Culbeck 19:12

30. Luke Davis 19:19

33. Mark Davis 19:26

43. Brennan Palmieri 20:10

44. Jayden Hotch 20:12


5. Avery Williamson 21:22

7. Mackenzy Dryden 21:26.41

8. Grace Long-Godinez 21:26.79

22. Avari Getchell 23:07

24. Hannah Boron 23:22

25. Lydia Andriesen 23:35

28. Haley Boron 23:58


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