The Wallowa Valley cross-country teams coached by Dan Moody kept their train on the rails with another stellar performance at the Kyle Burnside Wildhorse Invite in Pendleton Oct. 18.

The one-two punch of Ellyse Tingelstad and Kyla Hook led the ladies to a hard-fought victory over nemesis Union, while the boys cruised to a third-place victory behind the three freshman horsemen of Henry Coughlan, Zac Knapp and Bayden Menton.

The boys faced off against 17 other teams, some from larger schools. Wallowa Valley’s 93 points came in just behind Union’s 71 points. Coughlan steamed to a seventh-place finish overall with a time of 16:10.0 while Knapp followed just behind at 16:22.5 and Menton tailed in at 16:43.3 to finish in the 13 slot.

All three of the freshmen turned in personal best times.

“Having one kid at 16 (minutes) is exceptional,” Moody said. “All of a sudden, I have three boys in the 16s, and they’re all freshmen.”

The ladies took home the first prize with Tingelstad and Hook blazing in the second and third slots to defeat The Dalles and Union by 16 and 17 points, respectively.

Tingelstad turned in a time of 19:21 while Hook clocked in at 19:43.2. Ella Coughlan rounded out the top three Wallowa Valley spots with a 20:18.7 for ninth place overall. All three ladies turned in personal record times, as did other team members.

“I couldn’t have asked for a better effort,” Moody said.

Noting the upcoming Friday, Oct. 26, district meet in Pendleton, Moody said some rough seas are ahead, particularly for the ladies. Only the top two teams go to state from 3A District 3.

“It’s going to be a brawl,” he said. “There are two tough teams we have to worry about, and that’s Burns and Union. If any of our five girls stumble, we’re not going. That’s how close it will be.”

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