Summerland runners represent Okanagan

The 2015 BC High School Cross-Country Championships were held at Jericho Beach Park on Saturday, Nov. 7.

The 2015 BC High School Cross-Country Championships were held at Jericho Beach Park on Saturday, Nov. 7.

Four Summerland athletes qualified to represent the Okanagan Zone.

The record rainfall resulted in very challenging conditions, but the extreme weather didn’t deter these runners.

The Junior Boys five kilometre race was comprised of 210 competitors including Ben Geertz, Keagan Ingram and Jason Scherban of Summerland. All three came out of the mass start unscathed, resulting in three strong finishes.

Scherban finished in 20th place with a time of  19:18; Ingram finished 30th in 19:38 and Geertz placed 50th in 20:17.

Maya Venkataraman was Summerland Secondary’s sole entry in the Senior Girls 4.6 kilometre race. She braved the course along with 217 other competitors.

By this time, the rain hadn’t stopped and the course had been chewed up by earlier races.

Venkataraman persevered to finish in 30th place in a time of 19:36.

Brian Salter, the high school’s cross-country coach, said, “Any result in the top fifty runners at the provincial level is stellar. To have all four of our Summerland runners in the top fifty of their categories is truly excellent, especially on a day when the rain was falling hard and cold and the mud was deep. Running in patches of mud that deep takes extra work. Well done team.”

He added that the parents and co-coaches provided support. Coaching with Salter were teachers Aleita Lloyd and Jenny Ayers, and Michael Berrisford, coach for TriPower Triathlon Club.