Roelle, Updike win cross country races at Whitman Invite

September 9, 2014

Rachel Roelle RunningAlaskans Rachel Roelle and Lucas Updike of Eastern Oregon University each posted cross country victories at the season-opening competition at the Whitman Invitational in Washington.

Anchorage’s Roelle won the women’s 6-K race in 23:36, 10 seconds ahead of the second-place runner. She was one of only two Eastern Oregon runners among the top 14 finishers, so she prevailed on her own.

“Rachel ran an excellent tactical race,” EOU coach Ben Welch told the school’s website.

Roelle, of West High fame, sprinted to the front at the start and stayed with the lead pack of Whitman runners. She looked as if she would drop back near the halfway point, Welch said, but was able to stay strong and eventually pull away for the win over the final 400 meters.

Lucas Updike RunningHer time was 85 seconds faster than her effort at this race last year.

In the men’s race, Ketchikan’s Updike outsprinted an opponent down the stretch to collect the 8-K win by two seconds in 26:29. Like Roelle, Updike jumped to the front and was near the front the entire race.

Anchorage’s Hans Roelle was eighth in 28:04.