By: Scott Emigh, Editor-in-Chief
Two members of the Charles Page High School varsity cross country team competed on the Oklahoma All-Star Team against Arkansas this past month. Senior Southwestern Oklahoma State-signee and four-time State Qualifier Alexis Davis placed 28th in the event with a 5K time of 20:54.85. Sophomore two-time State Qualifier Aden Baughman placed 36th with a time of 17:25.38.
The Arkansas Women's team won by nine points, though their average time was only two seconds ahead of the Okies. The Arkansas Men's team won by two points, but the average Oklahoman was a second faster. The meet was held at Rogers High School in Rogers, Arkansas.
Cheyenne Walden also qualified for the event, but instead traveled to The Woodlands, Texas for the Nike South Regionals. The four-time State Champion placed fifth at Bear Branch Park against runners from five different states. She finished the 5K with a time of 17:58.22. She was 26 seconds behind her personal-record, ten seconds behind the number-four runner, and 25 seconds behind the first place runner.
From there Walden advanced to Nationals in Portland Oregon where she competed this past weekend. In 2014 she placed 22nd at the South Regional, then took sixth last year and went on to place 59th in the Nation.
This time around she improved even further, placing 34th out of 200 of the country's best competitors. Walden finished the 5K run in 18:28.2 with an average mile of 5:56.3. She was neck-and-neck with several competitors, finishing 0.3 seconds behind the 33rd place runner and a flat second ahead of the runner after her. Overall she was 1:18.3 behind Berkeley-signed senior Brie Oakley who swept the National Championship by a 28 second margin over Portland sophomore Ember Stratton.
According to Head Coach Chris Corbin, Walden's performance is the best placing ever for an Oklahoma girl at the event. Walden was presented with a Sandite Spirit Award by the Sand Springs Board of Education at their regular monthly meeting Monday night. "She's a better human being than she is a runner," said Corbin during the presentation. Walden volunteers every Tuesday and Thursday with the Elementary running program.
Walden signed with the No. 15 ranked Oklahoma State University earlier this school year and will be studying physical education. This is her fourth time being named Sandite of the Week.
Sandite of the Week is a weekly recognition given to any one person with significant ties to the Sand Springs community who accomplishes remarkable achievements during the Sunday through Saturday week preceding the award. Prior achievements may be noted in the article, but do not bear direct influence on the selection committee which only considers prior week accomplishments. Candidates may be nominated by anyone by emailing SanditePrideNews@gmail.com. The award is not given to anyone in consecutive weeks, but any recipient may be nominated and awarded again in the future, so long as the weeks are not consecutive. Final selection is made by a majority vote of the Sandite Pride Editorial Board.
Businesses or organizations seeking to sponsor the Sandite of the Week award may contact the above email for inquiries.