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Bandon Invitational

Bandon's girls run in a pack early in the Bandon Invitational on Tuesday at Bandon Dunes Golf Resort. 

BANDON — Bandon High School has enjoyed a good relationship with Bandon Dunes Golf Resort over the years.

The resort sponsors Bandon’s holiday basketball tournament each winter and the Tigers’ golf coaches have been pros at the resort.

And when Bandon was in a bind to find a course for its cross country invitational, the resort opened its arms, letting the Tigers take over the Shorty’s course at the practice center Tuesday after the Sheep Ranch course the team used last year wasn’t available this fall.

Bandon Dunes General Manager Don Crowe said the resort was happy to help out and the team would be welcome back next year.

Given the short notice for the meet, there were only five high schools present, and the host Tigers dominated the meet.

Bandon’s boys had the top five runners for a perfect score and the girls had seven of the top 11 and were the only complete team.

Isaac Cutler cruised to the boys win, covering the 5,000-meter course that included three laps around Shorty’s —with a trip along a forest trail the final two laps — in 18 minutes and 27 seconds.

That time was considerably slower than the 17:35 he ran Saturday while placing 22nd in a field that included three top Class 6A programs in the Woahink Invitational, but Cutler said he was happy with how he ran, adding that coach Brent Hutton wanted him to treat it more like a workout after he ran “as fast as I could push it” on Saturday.

“I went out kind of slow,” he said, explaining that he has often started too fast this year. “I felt a lot better.”

Teammate Aero Franklin was second in 19:44, and said he held back to try to pull his teammates to faster times.

“We cruised the first mile,” Franklin said, adding, “We have some really talented kids.”

Hunter Angove was third (20:08), Marino Santoro fourth (20:10) and Luke Brown fifth (20:21) for Bandon.

Only Gold Beach’s Brycen Pitchford (20:29) and Myrtle Point’s Aidan Lilienthal (20:40) kept Bandon from having the first seven boys.

Holly Hutton won the girls race for the Tigers in 23:19, more than a minute slower than her time while finishing 31st on Saturday. Shannon Smith was second for Bandon in 23:35.

“We started way too slow,” Hutton said.

The Tigers were instructed to stay behind Myrtle Point’s Sarah Nicholson for the first mile. Unfortunately, Nicholson had the same instructions from her coach, meaning nobody started very fast.

Hutton said she took off from Nicholson the first trip through the forest trail. Smith passed her later in the race.

“I was trying to catch Holly,” she said.

Nicholson, who beat both Bandon runners Saturday, was third in 24:06, followed by Bandon’s Aunika Miller (25:20), and Shelby Waterman (26:17). Myrtle Point’s Hunter Grove was sixth (26:50), followed by Bandon’s fifth runner, Alyssa Duenas (27:13).

The Tigers gave the course a strong review.

“I like the trails,” said Hutton. “They feel fast.”

Cutler agreed.

“I like it a lot,” he said of the course.

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Sports Editor John Gunther can be reached at 541-269-1222, ext. 241, or by email at Follow him on Twitter: @jguntherworld.