Oregon high school track and field: Meet the state’s top distance runners

Over the next week, we’ll be highlighting many of the state’s top high school track and field athletes.

Our second list focuses on the distance runners. Here are more than 40 of the state’s best in the 800, 1500 and 3000.

All marks through May 7

Featured photo by Taylor Balkom: Jeffery Rogers of Sherwood

Earlier:

Sprinters and hurdlers

Anika Thompson, Sr., Junction City

Personal bests: 800 meters, 2 minutes, 21.08 seconds; 1,500, 4:40.45; 3,000, 9:53.34

The University of Oregon signee won the Class 4A Showcase cross country championship last month and followed by becoming the 36th girl in state history to break 9:55 for 3,000 meters at an April 20 meet at Marshfield. She has improved on her personal best, now sitting 34th on the all-time list.

Anna Lanigan, Jr., Roosevelt

Personal bests: 1,500, 4:53.62; 3,000, 10:58.57

Lanigan broke the school record in the 1,500 during her freshman season and added the 3,000 mark this spring, besting a time run in 1983 by Tonya Anderson. 

Autumn Ost, Sr., Franklin

Personal bests: 800, 2:18.3; 1,500, 4:44.56; 3,000, 10:03.68

The Boise State signee is No. 2 on the school’s all-time list in the 3,000, lowering her personal best by six seconds at an April 30 meet — her time ranks No. 2 in the state this spring. Her role as a team captain included finding creative ways to keep her Lightning teammates motivated during the long layoff. According to coach Jacob Michaels, among her contributions were organizing a Halloween 5K run in costume and different themes for dressing for Friday runs. “She brought a goofiness to keep our morale up,” he said. 

Photo by Rockne Andrew Roll

Barrett Justema, So., Summit

Personal bests: 800, 2:19.46; 1,500, 4:51.22; 3,000, 10:27.10

Justema is the latest in a long line of standout distance runners to come through the Summit program. She ran 10:06.10 in an indoor 3K at the University of Washington in February and broke 2:20 in the 800 as a middle-schooler. “She’s a phenomenal runner, great from 800 to 3K,” Storm coach David Turnbull said. 

Bradley Kiltow, Sr., La Salle Prep

Personal bests: 1,500, 4:25.12; 3,000, 9:41.79

Kiltow showed his willingness for hard work by becoming an Eagle Scout at age 15. He will run next season at Linfield College. “Bradley has worked very hard to become the runner he is,” Falcons coach Mikel Rathmann said.  

Brody Bushnell, So., Philomath

Personal bests: 800, 1:58.17; 1,500, 4:03.04

Bushnell finished ninth as a freshman at the 4A state cross country meet and seventh last month at the Class 4A Showcase. On the track, he has focused on the shorter distance races, breaking two minutes at the Philomath Invite on May 1. 

Caleb Lakeman, Jr., Tualatin

Personal bests: 800, 1:56.56; 1,500, 4:01.86

When last we saw Lakeman on the track, he was a 2:13 runner in the 800 competing at the Three Rivers JV district meet. This season, he’ll be one of the favorites in the 800 at the culminating-week event. He ran what was then a state-leading time April 28 — it still ranks No. 2.

Cameron Stein, Sr., Ashland

Personal bests: 800, 1:56.94; 1,500, 3:55.53; 3,000, 8:18.89

Ashland has a deep stable of distance runners who learned from one of the state’s all-time bests in Evan Holland. Stein joined those ranks at the May 1 Phillips-Klimek Distance Twilight in Phoenix, with his winning time in the 3K moving him into 14th on the all-time state list. The University of Oregon commit finished first four times and second twice during the recently completed cross country season.

Photo by Rockne Andrew Roll

Caden Hildenbrand, Jr., Jesuit

Personal bests: 1,500, 4:02.94; 3,000, 8:37.17

Hildenbrand started his high school career at Westside Christian, placing 10th at the 3A/2A/1A state cross country championships and winning the 3A state title in the 3,000 as a freshman. He transferred to Jesuit that summer and helped the Crusaders to a second-place finish at the 2020 Class 6A state cross country meet. His time in the 3,000 this spring ranks No. 6 in the state and third among 6A runners.

Charlie Robertson, Sr., Franklin

Personal bests: 1,500, 3:53.08; 3,000, 8:32.08

Robertson won the district JV title in the 3K his freshman year, just the start of an outstanding career that will continue next fall at the University of Colorado. He won the 6A state championship in the 3,000 as a sophomore, with his time putting him in the top 50 in state history, and his state-leading time in the 1,500 this spring (run while wearing a mask throughout the race per PIL rules) moved him into 33rd on the state list in that event. “He is highly motivated to use his last high school season to run fast,” Lightning coach Jacob Michaels said.  

Charlotte Richman, Jr., Ida B. Wells (formerly Wilson)

Personal bests: 800, 2:23.41; 1,500, 4:44.72; 3,000, 10:06.08

Richman had a truncated freshman season for the Trojans but has ranked among the state leaders in the 1,500 and 3,000 this spring.

Chloe Foerster, Jr., Jesuit

Personal bests: 800, 2:07.44; 1,500, 4:43.82

Foerster has been one of the state’s top middle-distance runners since middle school, winning the 6A state title in the 800 as a freshman and anchoring the 4×400 relay to victory in the second-fastest time in state history. At a May 5 dual meet against Sherwood, she moved into third on the state’s all-time list in the 800 with a time that ranks No. 4 nationally. She ran a 4:51.65 mile against a national field at the Nike Rotary meet April 10 in Chandler, Ariz., which ranks No. 6 in state history. 

Photo by Taylor Balkom

Colin Friend, Jr., St. Stephen’s Academy

Personal bests: 1,500, 4:04.88; 3,000, 9:19.4

Friend placed eighth in the 3,000 at the 1A state meet as a freshman and fifth at the 2A/1A state cross country meet as a sophomore, but he’s really come into his own this spring. He went unbeaten in five cross country meets, including a victory at the Christian School Series Championship, and he ran a 1A-best 1,500 by breaking 4:05 for the first time at a Valley 10 meet May 7. Archers coach Tim Tsuei describes his approach this season as “COVID? What COVID?” adding that “I’ve never had a runner with such an appetite for running — for studying running and understanding recovery and nutrition and strength training. He’s a great talent who really enjoys honing his craft yet remains extremely coachable.” 

Eimy Martinez, Sr., North Salem

Personal bests: 800, 2:24.89; 1,500, 4:51.76; 3,000, 10:22.6

Martinez started her high school career as a cheerleader, but it was while running the mile during summer cheerleading practices that Vikings distance coach Michael Herrmann discovered her and convinced her to come out for cross country. She twice qualified for the state cross country meet, finishing in the top 15 both times, and won a seventh-place medal in the 1,500 as a sophomore to help North Salem win the 5A team title. The Oregon State commit struggled through health issues during cross country season but is rounding into form just in time for the final couple of weeks of track. “Eimy has essentially turned a negative situation into a positive over the past year,” Herrmann said. “When many athletes lost their drive, she became more driven. She’s got big goals and matches those aspirations with the work ethic to get there.”

Ella McGillis, Fr., Central Catholic

Personal bests: 800, 2:21.55; 1,500, 4:44.53

McGillis has had an instant impact on the prep distance running scene, winning six races and placing 12th at the Rose City Championships during cross country season and following with top-15 times in the state in the 800 and 1,500 in the first month of the track season. “She has displayed her versatility with fast efforts from 400 to 1,500,” Rams distance coach Robyn McGillis said. “She is a hard worker and good teammate with a competitive spirit.”

Erin Cosgrove, So., Southridge

Personal bests: 800, 2:35.02; 1,500, 5:15.96

Cosgrove missed out on her freshman season with the Skyhawks, but coach Katie Miller has high hopes for her developing into a state-caliber runner. She has ranked among Metro League leaders in both of her events this spring. 

Ethan Sturdivant, Jr., Sherwood

Personal bests: 800, 1:56.72; 1,500, 4:08.13

Sturdivant broke through as a freshman when he won the Pacific district title in the 800 and placed sixth at the 6A state championships. He’s qualified for the state cross country meet twice, and he ranks among the state leaders in the 800 again this spring. “Ethan has raw talent, no question, but what sets him apart is his creativity in training,” Bowmen coach Terrel Smith said. “I’ve had him in class over this past year, including through online learning, and it was a weekly occurrence for Ethan to go for a run during lunch break. Often, he arrives at practice warmed up as he usually runs from home.” 

Fiona Lenth, Sr., St. Mary’s Academy

Personal bests: 800, 2:24.93; 1,500, 4:46.17; 3,000, 10:21.09

Lenth is a three-time state cross country qualifier who won a Three Rivers district title as a sophomore and was a state medalist as a junior with a ninth-place finish. She has ranked among the state leaders in the 1,500 and 3,000 this spring, leading Three Rivers runners in the 3K. She will continue her career at Northwestern. 

Photo by Rockne Andrew Roll

Gigi Bareilles, Fr., Franklin

Personal bests: 800, 2:26.82

Coming off a cross country season in which she placed eighth at district as a freshman, Bareilles has displayed her speed and versatility at the middle distances on the track. She ranks among the top freshmen 800 runners in the state, leads off the Lightning’s 4×400 relay, and ran the 800 leg on a distance medley team that recorded the second-fastest time in school history April 21. 

Henry Coughlan, Jr., Joseph

Personal bests: 1,500, 4:14.07; 3,000, 8:53.75

Coughlan moved into sixth place on the all-time 1A list in the 3,000 at the Phillips-Klimek Distance Twilight on May 1, the latest in a long line of accomplishments during his career. He won the 2A/1A state cross country title as a sophomore after placing second as a freshman, and he took second in the 3,000 at the 1A state meet as a freshman. 

Jack Bennett, Sr., Jesuit

Personal bests: 800, 1:59.92; 1,500, 4:01.11; 3,000, 8:37.21

Bennett broke through as a sophomore when he made the podium at the state cross country meet (10th) and the state track meet (fifth in the 3,000). A muscle strain derailed his junior cross country season, and the pandemic wiped out track, but he’s had a strong senior campaign as he’s worked to improve his middle-distance marks before joining the Ivy League ranks when he enrolls at Columbia. He finished fifth in the 3,200 at the Olympia Invite in late April, best among Oregon runners.

Photo by Taylor Balkom

Jasper Fievet, Sr., Summit

Personal bests: 1,500, 4:54.92; 3,000, 10:32.94.

Fievet was part of Summit’s NXN Nike Cross Nationals championship team when she was a sophomore in 2018. Storm coach Dave Turnbull calls her “one of the best distance runners we have.” 

Jeffery Rogers, Jr., Sherwood

Personal bests: 800, 1:58.82; 1,500, 3:56.86; 3,000, 8:33.34

Rogers broke his school record May 1 in the 1,500 and ranks among state leaders in the 1,500 and 3,000. He broke two minutes in the 800 for the first time this spring — a result Bowmen coach Terrel Smith called “a pleasant surprise” coming off a cross country season that finished with an 11th-place finish at the Rose City Championships. “Many athletes lost their competitive momentum during the COVID break,” Smith said. “The opposite is true for Jeffery.” 

John Schuler, Jr., Jesuit

Personal bests: 800, 1:59.1; 1,500, 4:04.99; 3,000, 8:53.87

Schuler will challenge Hildenbrand as the Crusaders’ No. 1 runner next season. He’s demonstrated improvement from his first two seasons, when he posted two top-30 finishes at the state cross country championships and qualified for state in the 1,500 as a freshman. He finished ninth at the Olympia Invite in the 3,200 in a loaded field. 

Photo by Taylor Balkom

Josie Fale, Fr., Ida B. Wells

Personal bests: 800, 2:20.14; 1,500, 4:56.86; 3,000, 10:19.90

Fale has formed a formidable 1-2 combo with Charlotte Richman among the Trojans’ distance corps, running the state’s fifth-fastest 3,000 time (No. 3 in 6A, tops among freshmen statewide) in her first high school 3K. 

Judah Koehler, Sr., North Lake

Personal bests: 1,500, 5:41.39; 3,000, 12:17.79

Koehler is a two-time 1A state qualifier in the 3,000 who made the all-state third team after placing 16th at the spring 3A/2A/1A championships in cross country. She ranks among 1A leaders in the 800 and 1,500 this season. She will run at Corban University in the fall. 

Kyle Spencer, So., McMinnville

Personal bests: 1,500, 4:12.88; 3,000, 8:47.06

Spencer has battled classmate Kellen Reed for top honors on the Grizzlies all spring — first in cross country, where they finished 1-2 at the Pacific Conference district championships, and now on the track. 

Magdalene Williams, Jr., Summit

Personal bests: 800, 2:08.45; 1,500, 4:39.91

Williams made national headlines last month after she broke the school record in the 800 despite collapsing at the finish line because of oxygen debt caused by running the race while masked. The controversy prompted the Oregon Health Authority to revise its guidelines, allowing runners to compete without masks. She has made a full recovery and this month ran a state-leading personal-best time in the 1,500 that ranks No. 2 in the nation this spring.

Makenzie McRae, Fr., Summit

Personal bests: 800, 2:22.58; 1,500, 4:59.74; 3,000, 10:47.45

The Storm have become a distance dynasty in the state, and McRae has joined the ranks with the third-fastest 3K time by a freshman this spring following a cross country season that included a victory at the Oxford Classic. 

Mateo Althouse, Sr., Lincoln

Personal bests: 800, 1:56.65; 1,500, 3:56.70; 3,000, 8:29.37

The Georgetown signee has demonstrated his range this season, ranking third in the state in the 800, seventh in the 1,500 and fourth in the 3,000 while also anchoring the Cardinals’ distance medley team to the fifth-fastest time in the nation this spring (10:18.95). 

Photo by Rockne Andrew Roll

Mateo Candanoza, So., Philomath

Personal bests: 1,500, 4:21.46; 3,000, 9:10.01

Candanoza’s freshman cross country season was cut short by injury, and he didn’t get to run track last year. He came out strong this spring, finishing 12th at the Class 4A Showcase in cross country and winning four of his five races in track, including his past three 3Ks with his personal-best time at the Wally Ciochetti Invitational ranking fourth among 4A runners. 

Michael Maiorano, Jr., South Medford

Personal bests: 1,500, 3:56.51; 3,000, 8:19.95

Maiorano qualified for state in the 3,000 as a freshman. He is a two-time state cross country qualifier and placed third this spring at the Southern Oregon regional cross country championships and the Rose City Championships. His biggest claim to fame, though, came as part of the field at the Phillips-Klimek Distance Twilight this month, when he pushed race winner Cameron Stein of Ashland to the line and finished second, posting the 15th-fastest time in state history with the 22-second personal best. 

Molly Grant, Sr., Jesuit

Personal bests: 400, 57.24; 800, 2:09.73; 1,500, 4:46.08

Grant and her sister, Paige, have been stalwarts in the Crusaders’ distance corps the past four years, and both will run at Notre Dame in the fall. Molly finished runner-up to teammate Chloe Foerster in the 800 at the 6A state meet in 2019 (her personal best ranks No. 10 in state history) and was part of the 4×400 relay that posted the second-fastest time in state history that year. She split her focus between running and basketball her first three years, but coach Tom Rothenberger said, “We decided just before COVID to focus on running. Their hearts turned into becoming runners. They’re both built to run.”

Photo by Taylor Balkom

Nancy Biegel, Jr., Sherwood

Personal bests: 1,500, 4:54.65; 3,000, 10:26.60

Biegel is a transfer from South Anchorage High, where as a sophomore she placed 18th at the Alaska state cross country championships. This spring, she’s unbeaten in three 3K races, with her winning time against Jesuit on May 5 leading Pacific Conference runners and ranking No. 10 in the state. 

Olyvia Oeverman, Jr., St. Stephen’s Academy

Personal bests: 800, 2:33.22; 1,500, 5:16.73

Oeverman has been part of the Archers cross country program her entire high school career, but it wasn’t until this spring that coach Tim Tsuei convinced her to come out for track. She’s had an immediate impact, with 1A-leading times in the 800 and 1,500. “I always felt like she had great potential for middle-distance events, but until this season, things never worked out for her to be on the team,” Tsuei said. “In these early races, I’ve already seen that she has got it. She sees the strategy and the decisions that have to be made mid-race, as well as the mental discipline it takes in these much shorter races compared to cross country.” 

Paige Grant, Sr., Jesuit

Personal bests: 400, 58.34; 800, 2:13.70; 1,500, 4:50.93

Grant flashed plenty of potential during a freshman season that ended with a fourth-place finish in the 800 at the state meet, but injuries wrecked her next two seasons. This spring, she’s lowered her personal best in the 1,500. “She’s finally healthy again, and that’s great going into college,” Crusaders coach Tom Rothenberger said of the Notre Dame signee. 

Photo by Taylor Balkom

Reed Pryor, Sr., Ashland

Personal bests: 1,500, 3:55.98; 3,000, 8:21.10

Pryor came into his own during his sophomore track season running alongside current University of Oregon standout Evan Holland, taking home fifth-place medals in the 1,500 and 3,000 at the 5A state meet. He followed with a fourth-place finish at state cross country, and this spring, the Harvard commit took second at the Southern Oregon regional cross country meet and ran the 18th-fastest 3K in state history as part of a loaded field at the Phillips-Klimek Distance Twilight.

Rex Zhao, Sr., Southridge

Personal bests: 800, 2:00.0; 1,500, 4:12.34

Zhao has run for the Skyhawks for four seasons and has ranked among the Metro League leaders in the 800 and 1,500 this spring. 

Ryan Schumacher, Sr., Jesuit

Personal bests: 800, 1:59.2; 1,500, 4:08.96; 3,000, 8:41.50

Schumacher qualified for state in the 3,000 as a sophomore, narrowly missing the medals podium, and finished fourth at the state cross country meet as a junior. During the fall cross country season, he placed 12th at the USA Meet of Champions and eighth at the Nike Cross Virtual Championship, but he has battled some nagging injuries this spring, and Crusaders coach Tom Rothenberger is in no rush to get him back on the track with a collegiate career at Notre Dame upcoming. 

Seth Bergeron, Sr., St. Stephen’s Academy

Personal bests: 800, 2:00.41; 1,500, 4:10.76; 3,000, 9:37.71

Bergeron, headed to Division III Covenant College in Lookout Mountain, Ga., has displayed his versatility during his high school running career. As a freshman, he placed sixth at the 1A state meet in the 3K. The following year, he took sixth at state in cross country, then followed in the spring with a state title in the 800. After winning the state cross country title as a junior (leading the Archers to the team championship), he looked forward to a big junior season on the track, and then the pandemic hit, and, coach Tim Tsuei said, “he’s had a rough time training through this COVID year. I see some of the same fire in him that I saw two years ago now, and I’m hoping that he finishes his career here with a successful, albeit abbreviated, senior track season that gives some proper closure.” 

Photo by Rockne Andrew Roll

Sylvia Ingram, Sr., Ida B. Wells

Personal bests: 800, 2:25.74; 1,500, 4:49.59; 3,000, 10:22.34

Ingram is the veteran of the Trojans’ distance corps, having toiled for four seasons and qualified for the state cross country meet three times (best finish: 18th as a junior). This spring, she’s followed a seventh-place finish at the Rose City Championships cross country meet by ranking among the state leaders in the 3K with her personal-best run April 28. 

Teaghan Knox, Jr., Summit

Personal bests: 800, 2:18.61; 1,500, 4:33.86; 3,000, 10:34.83

Knox toiled behind the Max twins in the Summit pecking order her first two seasons — she was part of the Storm’s 2019 national champion cross country team — and after winning three state medals during her career (two in cross country and a fourth-place finish in the 1,500 at the 2019 Class 6A track meet), she’s poised to become a star in her own right. She won three of her four races during the cross country season and was nominated for Gatorade athlete of the year. “She is really a special kid,” Summit coach Dave Turnbull said.  

Trent Tobiasson, Sr., North Lake

Personal bests: 1,500, 4:57.06; 3,000, 11:20.05

Tobiasson has enjoyed a breakthrough season as a senior, qualifying for the 3A/2A/1A spring championships in cross country and now looking to qualify for the culminating-week championship in the middle distances on the track. 

Vincent Mestler, Sr., Sheldon

Personal bests: 800, 1:54.25; 1,500, 4:01.16; 3,000, 8:37.03

Mestler is the latest to uphold the family distance running legacy and soon will become the next Mestler to run at the University of Oregon after signing with the Ducks this year. He won two medals at the 2019 state track meet as a sophomore (fourth in the 3K, eighth in the 1,500) and qualified for state three times in cross country, winning a district title and placing eighth as a junior. This year, he went unbeaten in five cross country meets and ran the state’s best time in the 800 at the City Invitational on May 1.

Photo by Rockne Andrew Roll

Earlier:

Sprinters and hurdlers

Thank you for joining the discussion on SBLive!

%d bloggers like this: