DEV Bachani and Kaithlyn Chavez finished first in their respective divisions in the high school 5K categories of the Public School System/Northern Marianas Athletics Cross Country Qualifier 1 Saturday at Banzai Cliff.

In the High School Boys 5K Division, Dev Bachani blew through the course with a finish time of 00:20:41.

“It was really good,”  Bachani said when asked about the race. “It was nice and shady — a new environment,” referring to the jungle trail.

Although Rex Pixley was behind Bachani for almost the entire race, it was the jungle trail that separated the two.

Pixley settled for second place with a time of 00:21:10 beating Cody Shimizu who took third place at 00:21:11.

In the team event, Marianas High School led with 16 points. 

In the High School Girls 5K Division, Kaithlyn Chavez was the top runner with a finish time of 00:22:49.

She was followed by Tiana Cabrera who clocked at 00:24:35 and Allyssa Angeles with a time of 00:26:07.

Saipan International School led the team event with 12 points.

As for the Middle School Boys 2 Mile Division, Moshe Sikkel led the pack with a finish time of 00:14:53 while Takeru Jim placed second with a time of 00:15:54 and Sean Park was third with a time of 00:16:15.

Grace Christian Academy topped the team event with 17 points.

In the Middle School Girls Division, Morgan Finco was first with a time of 00:22:49 followed by Suki Peng, 00:16:44; and Abbie Kim, 00:17:26.

SIS won its second team event with 19 points.

In the U12 Boys 1-Mile Division, Finn Altizer reigned with a finish time of 00:07:00; Akeen Edvalson was second, 00:07:18; and JuWon Lee was third, 00:09:43.

SIS topped another the team event with 10 points.

SIS likewise ruled the girls division with Eliza Culp finishing first  with a time of 00:08:30 followed by Lucy Woo, 00:08:31; and Pailin Brasuell, 00:08:32.

 SIS claimed the team event with 17 points.

Lastly, in the U9 1-Mile Category, Jude Rayphand led the boys division with a time of 00:07:06 followed by Kanoa Owens at 00:07:46 and Evan Poole at 00:07:59.

In the girls division, Windsor Gross took the top spot with a finish time of 00:08:06, Neveah Arriola was second at 00:08:27, and Leilani Ruszala was third at 00:08:36.

SIS took both teams events, garnering 25 points in the boys division and 13 points in the girls division.

Very happy

A total of 350 runners registered for the event —  the largest number so far for a PSS/NMA cross country.

“I was very happy with the outcome,” SIS Headmaster Dr. Ron Synder said. “Of course, there is always room for improvement and we will be debriefing this week to make sure it is even better next time.”

He added, “I was actually blown away — 350 registrants (not counting the volunteers)! This was much bigger than we expected and I am glad we were able to host the first qualifier this year in conjunction with a community fun run and our first ever Open XC. We could never have done it without the volunteers from the SIS faculty, the SIS Rotary Interact Club, NMA and Run Saipan. They made it all run smoothly. Next year we have plans for a 1-mile fun run as well as the 5K fun run. This should help out the families with younger children to participate as well. Our biggest hope is that we can play a small part in encouraging greater cardiovascular health in the CNMI.”

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