The Lions will use a combination of experience and newcomers to compete.
Experience and youth.
The West Linn girls cross country team will need both to step up to achieve success in 2022. The Lions tied for sixth at the Three Rivers League district meet a year ago (just a point out of fifth), but think they have a chance to be better this year.
“My best girls are a mix of freshmen and seniors,” said West Linn coach Jay Schrotzberger. “I think our underclassmen are going to be the key to our success. The freshmen will need some time to adjust to the (5-kilometer) distance, but as they do, I think we’ll increasingly become a threat.”
This year’s Lions will look to senior Audrey Jacklyn, senior Ava Sullivan, senior Audrey Lippert, sophomore Sabrina Noce, sophomore Sydney Taylor, sophomore Sara Henry, freshman Kendall Atwood, freshman Violet Gowdy, freshman Laurent Burnett and freshman Sophie Maxwell.
“Audrey Jacklyn, Ava Sullivan and Audrey Lippert have run for at least three years and … know the way the program works and what is expected of the varsity team,” Schrotzberger said, adding that “Violet Gowdy and Kendall Atwood have both put in some solid running throughout the summer, while Lauren Burnett and Sophie Maxwell only recently joined us but are already showing promise.”
What that will all add up to in the crucible of TRL competition, however, remains to be seen.
“Our varsity team (is) a bit fluid at the moment. We have a lot of new runners joining us this season and several of them are likely to be varsity contributors this season,” Schrotzberger said. “How we’ll fare in the TRL is very much up in the air.”
As to the coming 2022 TRL league race — the Lions open league competition at the TRL Preview Meet at 6:15 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 7, at Clackamas Community College — Schrotzberger said he expects Lakeridge and Tualatin to fight for the top spot in 2022.
“I expect Lakeridge to be the team to beat again, (but) Tualatin will be up there battling it out with them,” he said. “They both return a lot from last year’s roster and they’re only getting better.”
See the Lakeridge preview here.
See the Lake Oswego preview here.