Basalt’s Zach Walsh first at Rifle race |

Basalt’s Zach Walsh first at Rifle race

Staff report
Basalt senior Zach Walsh heads for victory in the Rifle Invitational cross country race on Friday afternoon. Walsh edged Brenden Wagler of Rifle, wh ofinished second. Battle Mountain dominated to win the team title.
Jon Mitchell/Glenwood Springs Post Independent |

Basalt High School senior Zach Walsh knows how to get to the finish line fast.

Walsh, one of the top-ranked cross country runners in Class 3A, added to his star-studded season with a victory in the annual Rifle Invitational.

Walsh won the 5-kilometer run on the Rifle Creek Golf Course in 15 minutes, 59 seconds — his second trip under 16 minutes this season for the prep cross coiuntry distance.

The Basalt senior won a duel with Brenden Wagler, one of the top Class 4A runners in the state.

Wagler finished in 16:04, good for second place in his home meet on Friday afternoon.

Patrick Scoggins of Rangely finished third in the boys race in 16:50. Fourth went to Ben Kelley of Soroco (Oak Creek) in 16:53.

Basalt’s Lyle Luckett finished ninth in the field.

Walsh earlier this season won the title at the Delta Invitational. He was third last weekend in the annual Chris Severy Invitational in Aspen.

In the girls race at Rifle, Tatum Burger and Kathleen O’Connell, both of Steamboat Springs, finished first and second, respectively. Burger won in 19:13.

Emily Womble of Moffat County (Craigi) was third in 19:57, followed by Alex Raichart of Battle Mountain in fourth place.

Steamboat also placed runners fifth and sixth to dominate the girls division.

Claudia Hirons of Glenwood Springs, who won the girls title in Basalt earlier this year, was seventh in the girls field.

In overall team scoring, Battle Mountain won with 56 points.

The Huskies won both team titles at the Chris Severy Invitational last weekend.

Glenwood Springs was second with 87 points. Basalt was third with 95.

The teams will compete in the Regional Cross Country Championships on Friday at Confluence Park in Delta.

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