Tostenson shines in finale, college next

It was nice to see Crater senior Gracie Tostenson finish strong at the Class 6A state cross country championships Saturday at Lane Community College in Eugene. She was gearing up for the district and state meets and was in fabulous shape when she hurt her right knee in a fall during a morning training run about a month ago. She didn’t tell coach Justin Loftus about it until the team workout that afternoon. He said she seemed to feel guilty.

She gutted out a sixth-place district finish just to get to state, then ran strong there. Among those she beat were five girls who placed ahead of her at district and Paige Rice, the 2011 state champion from St. Mary’s. Tostenson’s time for 5,000 meters 18:26, one second out of second place.

It should show the colleges recruiting her that she’s still in good shape. She took a visit to Portland State shortly after the injury. She has another visit pending to Hawaii. Utah of the Pac-12 and Southern Utah are also in the picture, according to Loftus.

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