PHS cross-country course sign
The Paul Mariman cross-country course at Philomath High School (Photo by Brad Fuqua/Philomath News)

Following a blog that I wrote last week about the OSAA executive board’s decision to not host state championships and leaving it up to the schools, I quickly learned that Philomath High is involved with participating in such arrangements.

Cross-country coach Joe Fulton said that although it’s true that the OSAA will not host state events, Class 4A coaches and athletic directors are planning on having championships for fall sports (which are competing in March and April).

“If successful, then this year’s 4A state cross-country meet will be on Saturday, April 10, at either Lane Community College or a golf course in Tillamook,” Fulton said. “It is a work in progress.”

Although many runners have been getting in miles on a voluntary basis, cross-country practice officially starts today at 3:30 p.m. Fulton said that because of the poor condition of the PHS course, most practices will take place at alternate locations.

As for the possibility of the other fall sports participating in championship competitions during the OSAA culminating week, PHS Athletic Director Tony Matta said he may have news on that for me this week. So it appears that schools are trying to work together to make things happen for their programs.

But back to cross-country, one update to report on involving the schedule. Fulton said he had planned to send some runners to a March 6 meet at Toledo. However, if the Benton County COVID-19 risk level is higher than the Lincoln County level, he said the Warriors won’t be allowed to compete. It’s possible that the Warriors may head to The Dam Run at Cottage Grove on that date.

The rest of the schedule remains the same, including a district meet on April 3 at Sweet Home preceding that state championship meet on April 10 at either Eugene or Tillamook.

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