Sports

Rodeheffer, Wicker earn All-American status | WIRC

From left, John Rodeheffer, Harrison Keating, Laura Rodeheffer and Christina Wicker stand by a monument at the Whispering Pines Golf Course in South Carolina, home of the national Junior Olympic cross country race. - Photo by Bill Rodeheffer
From left, John Rodeheffer, Harrison Keating, Laura Rodeheffer and Christina Wicker stand by a monument at the Whispering Pines Golf Course in South Carolina, home of the national Junior Olympic cross country race.
— image credit: Photo by Bill Rodeheffer

Two of the four Whidbey Island Running Club members who competed in the national Junior Olympic cross country meet in Myrtle Creek, S.C., Saturday, Dec. 10, earned All-American honors.

John Rodeheffer, 15, and Christina Wicker, 16, each earned All-American status by placing in the top 25 of the intermediate division (15 and 16 year olds) at Whispering Pines Golf Course.

Rodeheffer placed 22nd out of 188 runners in 16:13 over the 5K course, a personal record by 36 seconds. This was his third All-America ranking in cross country with USA Track and Field.

Wicker placed 23rd out of 139 in a lifetime best 19:05 for her second All-American ranking. Last year she placed 54th in 21:14.

Coach Catie Rodeheffer said, "She executed a beautiful, long finishing kick which placed her 23rd by passing other girls."

Harrison Keating, 8, finished 48th out of 128 in the first ever 7/8 national sub-bantam 2,000-meter race. He ran an 8:42, a personal best by 34 seconds, and "showed great composure despite the large numbers of kids," according to coach Rodeheffer.

Laura Rodeheffer, 12, was 72nd out of 251 in the 11/12 midget girls race in 11:31. This division "showed the largest number of growth in fast runners," coach Rodeheffer said.

Last year Laura Rodeheffer ran four seconds slower but placed 13th.

The huge numbers was a challenge and Rodeheffer found herself in 112th after the first mile, but steadily moved up throughout the remainder of the race.

Next year's national meet will be in Albuquerque.

WIRC, sponsored by the North Whidbey Parks and Recreation District, is a year-round club for kids ages 5 to 18. Coach Rodeheffer said new members, regardless of experience, are always welcome. Contact her at 360-279-2196 or catie@rodeheffer.net for more information.

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