For some prep cross country teams, the hardest day of the week to work is race day.
Not so for the Sequim Wolves.
Using coach Harold Huff's program of training through the middle of October, the Wolves put in a hard week of running in practice and still managed a respectable finish against some of the best teams in the region at Saturday's Salt Creek Invite, just west of Port Angeles.
The Wolves' team finished seventh overall in the 20-school boys division, behind such powerhouse teams Bellevue, Nathan Hale and Newport.
Save for North Kitsap, Sequim beat each of its Olympic League rivals, including Port Townsend (eighth), Klahowya (12th), Kingston (14th), North Mason (15th) and host Port Angeles (16th).
"We had a killer training week," Sequim coach Harold Huff said. "We'll train through the league meets. The kids know not to get disappointed."
Sequim freshman Adrian Clifford and senior Colby Robb led the charge, finishing in 16:43 and 16:45 respectively for 34th and 35th places.
Junior Alex Jenkins was 49th overall with a 17:10 finish while Tyler Wilson Walters (17:14, 54th ) and Drake Apablasa (17:24, 61st) rounded out Sequim's top five.
Jenkins said he was a little disappointed about the race.
"I didn't eat enough," the junior said, "(but) we bunched up pretty well."
Without top runner Alli Cutting, Sequim's girls ran in the junior varsity ranks and senior Taylor Roads nearly won it. Roads finished in 21:16, good for second place. In her first cross country race, Sarah Johnson took 42nd overall with a 24:30 finish while freshmen Tenisha Powless (46th) and Amelia Ohnstad (47th in her second-ever cross country race) were close behind.
Up next for the Wolves is a match-up at Bremerton against the 3A Knights and 2A Klahowya Eagles on Sept. 23. Then Sequim hits the road for a much longer trip: the annual Seaside Challenge in Seaside, Ore., on Sept. 26.
"It's not just a race; it's an event," Jenkins said. "It's like a vacation. We get to hang out with friends ... and then do work."