Out-of-towners shine at Las Vegas Invitational

Friday’s downpours paved the way for beautiful weather on Saturday morning.

Perfect for cross country, and the out-of-state runners who came to town for the Las Vegas Invitational.

Out-of-towners avoided the sweltering temperatures, and took the top three individual places in both the varsity boys and girls races at the early-season meet at Sunset Park on Saturday.

Pahrump Valley’s Bryce Odegard finished fourth in the varsity boys race to earn top honors among local runners.

“That was a really fast race,” Odegard said at the finish line. “I was hoping to win, but it was fun to compete against runners from other states.”

Odegard, a senior, was second among varsity small-school racers behind Caleb Armstrong of Hurricane High School in Utah.

Armstrong repeated as meet champion, though his winning time of 14 minutes, 50 seconds, was 18 seconds slower than his time in 2016. Odegard finished in 15 minutes, 29 seconds.

“I enjoy running here,” Caleb Armstrong said. “I love the dirt trails on this course and it was actually nice running in the rain.”

Cedar City’s Jensen Lambert was second in 14 minutes, 57 seconds, while Bowen Martin of Page High School (Ariz.) was third in 15 minutes, 14 seconds.

Green Valley’s Milton Amezcua was sixth overall and third among large-school runners in 15 minutes, 33 seconds.

Raquel Chavez, a junior from host Basic, placed fourth in the varsity girls race in 18 minutes, 26 seconds, and was the top local finisher. Emilia Puskas of Bishop Gorman was fifth.

A trio of Cedar City (Utah) runners swept the top three spots in the girls race with Mic Webster winning in 17 minutes, 39 seconds.

Page High School topped the boys big-school standings with 116 points — three fewer than Green Valley. Coronado was third with 130 followed by Cedar City (134), Palo Verde (157) and Arbor View (164).

Hurricane had four of the top five scorers among small schools and won that team division with 25 points. Pahrump Valley was second with 56, followed by Moapa Valley (116).

Local star Alexis Gourrier of Centennial was on a recruiting visit to Iowa State and fellow standout Delani Dietrich was taking the ACT, according to Centennial girls’ coach Kisha Finch.

Chavez said she had to change her gameplan as a result of their absence.

“Usually I tend to pace myself off them,” Chavez said. “Since they weren’t here, I had to adjust a bit.”

Cedar High School won the large-school girls race with 33 points. Centennial was second with 98, and Coronado finished third with 122. Hurricane won the girls’ small-school race with 29 points, followed by Desert Pines (43) and Tech (51).