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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Prep notebook: Distance great Riley helps the Dragons

Katie Reidy, St. George’s second-place state cross country finisher and runner-up in both the 1,600 and 800 races during last year’s State 2B track meet, has had a renowned distance runner for a mentor.

Rick Riley, one of the greatest in Spokane high school and area college annals, is bringing his expertise to Reidy and her distance teammates as the Dragons distance coach.

The opening came, said coach Terry Templeton, when cross country and track distance coach Josh Hayes took the spring off due to another commitment.

Templeton, in his fourth year there after coaching track and cross country at Valley Christian, said, “I was looking forward to working with the distances when Josh stepped aside. When Rick offered his services, I jumped at the chance. Ever since I was a kid I’ve known who Rick was. He was a hero.”

Riley, a product of Spokane’s distance hotbed, set the state and national prep record for two miles during an illustrious career at Ferris by clocking 8:48.3 in 1966. He was selected to the U.S. national team while still in high school. At Washington State University, he became Spokane’s fastest miler with a time of 3 minute, 59.2 seconds in 1970.

Out of the limelight, Riley said he was approached by people like Reidy for running help and five years ago returned to coaching with the Spokane Mercury Track Club.

“I provided Katie schedules and ran with her in the summer and winter,” he said. “I kept her focused and positive. She’s an extremely motivated individual and very driven.”

He said her family approached him about applying for the St. George’s distance coaching job. Last a school coach more than a quarter century ago, Riley is back and enjoying himself. This weekend he’ll travel with Reidy to the Pasco Invitational.

“I’ve found out how much I missed it,” Reilly said. “And it never ceases to amaze me seeing the continuing crop of (talented) kids. It never ends in Spokane.”

•Mead and North Central boys finished one-two at last weekend’s Mooberry Relays. Both 2-0 in Greater Spokane League duals, they face off Thursday in a first-place meet at Mead. Ferris travels to Mt. Spokane, the winner also remaining unbeaten. Gonzaga Prep, Mead and University girls won twice last week. The Titans and Ferris (1-0) do battle at Mt. Spokane.

Three in Shootout

Three of the 20 Washington players participating this weekend in the 16th Northwest Shootout basketball game against the best from Oregon come from the GSL.

Lewis and Clark standouts Jeneva Anderson and Sarah Kliewer will play at 4 p.m. in the girls game in Portland. Shadle Park’s Anthony Brown will play at 6 in the boys game.

Oregon boys have won 10 of the previous 15 games. Washington girls have won eight of 15. Washington teams won both last year.

Anderson averaged 12.2 points per game and had 185 rebounds and 95 assists for the State 4A fifth-place Tigers. She is headed to the University of Washington.

Kliewer averaged 10.2 points per game and pulled down 241 rebounds and will play at the University of Portland.

Brown averaged 18 points per game, had 223 rebounds and 131 assists this past season at Shadle Park and is committed to play at Washington State

The Northwest Shootout is a fundraiser for the Multnomah Athletic Foundation.

Seasons at midpoint

Greater Spokane League baseball, soccer and softball are, or will be this week, at the midpoint of their seasons.

Baseball: University (9-1) is being pursued by Mead (7-1) with Central Valley (8-2) a game behind. The Panthers face fourth-place Ferris (6-4) twice this week, today and Thursday.

•No team is unbeaten in the Great Northern League. Cheney is half a game ahead of Clarkston, Pullman and West Valley with games among them upcoming this week.

Softball: University and Mead enter the week tied (7-1) for first place with Central Valley and Shadle Park (both 6-2) a game behind. The Bears are at the Highlanders on Thursday. The future of GSL pitching was on display when EV freshman Tiffany Lucas pitched five shutout innings following a shaky start in last week’s 10-6 win over Shadle.

•Colville and Clarkston (both 4-0) have a game lead over West Valley and Pullman in the early stages of the GNL.

Soccer: Lewis and Clark (5-0) negotiated the first half the schedule unblemished with one-goal wins over contenders Mead (4-1) and University (3-2). The Tigers face tests the final three dates of the season against North Central, Ferris and Central Valley beginning April 24. NC (3-1) has been the season’s surprise and plays Ferris (2-2) at Albi Stadium Tuesday at 4 p.m. U-Hi hosts unbeaten CV (4-0) at 7 p.m.

•There are showdowns among the top four GNL teams today. Cheney (6-0) hosts Medical Lake (4-2) and Pullman (4-1) is at West Valley (4-2) in positional matches. Cheney, including three 1-0 wins, hasn’t allowed a goal in league.

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