WATCH Grace Hutchison's Double At Buchanan Distance Classic

Buchanan junior Grace Hutchison (3) closes out a victory in the 800-meter race, with freshman teammate Sierra Cornett (8) closing fast for second at the Buchanan Distance Classic. (DeAnna Turner photo)

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Buchanan (CS) junior Grace Hutchison opened her 2022 track and field season with two strong victories at the Buchanan Distance Classic held Friday on the iconic oval at Veterans Memorial Stadium in Clovis. 

Hutchison was the consistent No. 2 runner on the Bears' CIF-Central Section and CIF-State Division I champion cross country team that went on to place second at the Garmin Running Lane National Championship meet in Huntsville, Alabama. That team would go on to earn a MileSplit 50 No. 3 national ranking

On Friday, taking the line on her home track, Hutchison was the class of the field in both the 1600- and 800-meter races. 

In the 1600, she quickly created a gap in front of a field that included returning standouts like classmate Sydney Sundgren, Clovis North senior Miliana Perez and junior Ashlyn Leath, Buchanan freshman Sierra Cornett and junior Caroline Mendyk, and Clovis junior Emma Ruvalcaba, among others in the fast section of the four-lapper. 

Hutchison finished in 5 minutes, 0.65 seconds. Sundgren was second in 5:04.88 followed by Leath (5:06.16), Cornett (5:08.44), Mendyk (5:11.72), and Ruvalcaba (5:13.03). Clovis North senior Tatum Zinkin was next in 5:15.06 followed by Perez (5:15.89) and Clovis East senior Ariana Womack (5:17.25). 


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Almost exactly two hours after finishing her 1600 race, Hutchison took the line in the 800 with a field that included Cornett, Sundgren, Leath, and Clovis East junior Erika Nyberg, among 16 runners

Again it was Hutchison taking command of the race and finishing strong in 2:21.29. Cornett surged late to overtake Nyberg for third, crossing in 2:22.26 with Nyberg timing at 2:23.02. Sundgren completed the two laps in 2:23.16 and Leath was fifth in 2:24.14. Ruvalcaba again placed sixth (2:25.02) followed by the Buchanan duo of Mendyk (2:26.16) and senior Kaylee Elliott (2:27.94).


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