Division II girls winner Autumn Daigle (center) receives hugs from her brother and mother Ann (right) Saturday, Sept. 30, 2017 at the ASAA First National Bank Alaska Cross-country State Championships at Bartlett High School in Anchorage, Alaska. (Photo by Joey Klecka/Peninsula Clarion)

Division II girls winner Autumn Daigle (center) receives hugs from her brother and mother Ann (right) Saturday, Sept. 30, 2017 at the ASAA First National Bank Alaska Cross-country State Championships at Bartlett High School in Anchorage, Alaska. (Photo by Joey Klecka/Peninsula Clarion)

Homer’s Autumn Daigle wins state cross-country championship race

Saturday was a great day for young Homer runners, but it was especially sweet for sophomore Autumn Daigle, who claimed first place for the Division II women at the weekend’s ASAA First National Bank Alaska Cross-country State Championships in Anchorage.

Daigle powered through a surprise finish where she passed leader Ruby Linquist of Seward with only meters to go and finished the 5-kilometer race at Bartlett High School in 19 minutes, 30 seconds, 5 seconds ahead of Linquist’s time of 19:35. She became Homer’s first-ever state championship runner to win first place.

“I’m so surprised at myself,” Daigle told the Peninsula Clarion in the finishing area on the Bartlett football field.

Daigle led several other lady Mariner runners who powered through the trails course and helped push the Homer girls team to second place overall in the championships with 58 points. The team fell short of its fourth championship crown in a row by just once point — Grace Christian School claimed the top spot with 57 points. Seward High School also tied with the Homer girls for second place.

Head Coach Annie Ridgely said a lot of her runners had been working hard throughout the summer to stay in shape, and credited the assistant coaches, parents and community members who contributed to their success.

“I think it takes a community, and we drew upon that,” she said.

From the Kachemak Bay Running Club sponsoring a youth running program this summer to highly accomplished runners in the community visiting with the team, Ridgely said help and support came to the students from all sides.

The Homer boys team faired equally well at Saturday’s meet, also coming in second for the Division II teams with 67 points. Anchorage Christian School clinched the Division II state championships title with 60 points. Had the Homer boys taken first place, it would have been the second year in a row.

Senior Jacob Davis was the first Homer runner across the 5-k finish line in 16:42, taking fourth place overall for the men.

Ridgely said this was a building season for the team, and that a lot of people didn’t think there would be a strong cross-country team this year. She said she realized early on that setting high standards would help her runners surpass anticipations for the season.

“The higher the expectations the higher they’ll rise,” she said. “And they did.”

Homer girls individual 5-k results:

1. Autumn Daigle, 19:30; 4. Brooke Miller, 20:09; 9. Alex Moseley, 20:37; 18. Sienna Carey, 21:45; 34. Katie Davis 22:55; 39. Shine Carey 23:12; 66. Harmony Davidson, 24:12.

Homer boys individual 5-k results:

4. Jacob Davis, 16:42; 6. Luciano Fasulo 16:46; 14. Jordan Beachy 17:22; 20. Denver Waclawski 17:43; 30. Bill Rich 18:02; 48. Clayton Beachy 18:26; 65. Dexter Lowe 18:56.

For full results from the state championship meet, see the weekly sports highlights.

Reach Megan Pacer at megan.pacer@homernews.com.

Homer sophomore Autumn Daigle beats Seward senior Ruby Lindquist to the finish line in the Division II girls race at the ASAA/First National Bank Alaska State Cross Country Championships on Saturday, Sept. 30, 2017 at Bartlett High School in Anchorage, Alaska. (Photo by Matt Tunseth/Chugiak-Eagle River Star)

Homer sophomore Autumn Daigle beats Seward senior Ruby Lindquist to the finish line in the Division II girls race at the ASAA/First National Bank Alaska State Cross Country Championships on Saturday, Sept. 30, 2017 at Bartlett High School in Anchorage, Alaska. (Photo by Matt Tunseth/Chugiak-Eagle River Star)

Seward senior Ruby Lindquist (774) leads a pack of Division II girls runners up the hill with eventual race winner Autumn Daigle (middle) of Homer in tow Saturday, Sept. 30, 2017 at the ASAA First National Bank Alaska Cross-country State Championships at Bartlett High School in Anchorage, Alaska. (Photo by Joey Klecka/Peninsula Clarion)

Seward senior Ruby Lindquist (774) leads a pack of Division II girls runners up the hill with eventual race winner Autumn Daigle (middle) of Homer in tow Saturday, Sept. 30, 2017 at the ASAA First National Bank Alaska Cross-country State Championships at Bartlett High School in Anchorage, Alaska. (Photo by Joey Klecka/Peninsula Clarion)

Homer freshman Autumn Daigle celebrates her victory in the Division II girls race with her mom, Anne, dad, Patrick, and teammate Jordan Beachy at the ASAA/First National Bank Alaska State Cross Country Championships on Saturday, Sept. 30, 2017 at Bartlett High School in Anchorage, Alaska. (Photo by Matt Tunseth/Chugiak-Eagle River Star)

Homer freshman Autumn Daigle celebrates her victory in the Division II girls race with her mom, Anne, dad, Patrick, and teammate Jordan Beachy at the ASAA/First National Bank Alaska State Cross Country Championships on Saturday, Sept. 30, 2017 at Bartlett High School in Anchorage, Alaska. (Photo by Matt Tunseth/Chugiak-Eagle River Star)

Homer freshman Autumn Daigle celebrates her victory in the Division II girls race with her mom, Anne, and brother, Ben, at the ASAA/First National Bank Alaska State Cross Country Championships on Saturday, Sept. 30, 2017 at Bartlett High School in Anchorage, Alaska. (Photo by Matt Tunseth/Chugiak-Eagle River Star)

Homer freshman Autumn Daigle celebrates her victory in the Division II girls race with her mom, Anne, and brother, Ben, at the ASAA/First National Bank Alaska State Cross Country Championships on Saturday, Sept. 30, 2017 at Bartlett High School in Anchorage, Alaska. (Photo by Matt Tunseth/Chugiak-Eagle River Star)

More in Sports

Kenai’s James Sparks runs for a gain after a catch during a loss to Houston on Friday, Sept. 3, 2021, in Houston, Alaska. (Photo by Jeremiah Bartz/Frontiersman)
Kards, Mariners collect Mid Alaska Conference honors

The Mid Alaska Conference Awards have been announced. The honorees are: First… Continue reading

Kenai Central’s Jorgi Phillips attacks against Homer on Tuesday, Oct. 19, 2021, at Homer High School in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Sarah Knapp/Homer News)
Kenai volleyball sweeps Homer

The visiting Kenai Central volleyball team swept Homer on Tuesday in Southcentral… Continue reading

Sports in brief

Volleyball Upcoming meets: TBA Friday, Oct. 22: Junior Varsity Volleyball at Diamond/Service… Continue reading

MJ Hendren pictured kayaking at Hidden Lake next to a large rock exposure. (Photo provided)
Refuge Notebook: Geology of the Kenai … it rocks!

One thing that never ceases to amaze me about living in Alaska… Continue reading

Photo by Kat Sorensen 
The pedicure in question has seen many miles of hiking and walking since it was first painted on five months ago.
Tangled Up in Blue: A perfect pedicure

There is just the smallest sliver of light pink nail polish left… Continue reading

Photo by Angelica Smith/FWS 
Frannie Nelson collecting ground validation data for her undergraduate thesis in the Caribou Hills.
Refuge Notebook: Spreading my wings and flying into a new field

In 2019, I became a biology intern at the Kenai National Wildlife… Continue reading

Sports in brief

Volleyball Upcoming meets: TBA Thursday, Oct. 14: Varsity Volleyball at Juneau Tourney… Continue reading

Anthony Botello fishes for halibut off the coast of Homer, Alaska, on Sept. 6, 2021. (Camille Botello)
Out of the Office: Fish on!

I was pretty spoiled as a kid. The chest freezer in our… Continue reading

Olympic gold medalist Lydia Jacoby waves to the crowd in Seward during her celebratory parade on Thursday, August 5, 2021. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Jacoby nabs two 2nds at World Cup

Lydia Jacoby, a 17-year-old senior at Seward High School, finished second in… Continue reading

Most Read