Sequim coach Harold Huff figured he had something special in young Adrian Clifford well before the first meet of the season.
He figured right.
Clifford sped to a 13:22 finish to win the 2.3-mile freshman boys' race at the Capital City Invite in Olympia on Saturday, capping a strong showing from the Wolves' male runners.
Nine Sequim runners finished in the upper half of their respective races at the perennially tough early-season invitational, featuring 29 schools from five Washington state classifications and two large Oregon schools.
Sequim junior Alex Jenkins had an impressive showing as well, completing the junior course in 12:50.9 for eighth place, about 45 seconds in back of winner Dakota Parker of Chehalis. His finish was the 22nd-fastest time of any competitor.
Sequim had three senior boys finish in the top 30 of their 90-member senior race: Tyler Wilson-Walters (13:26, 22nd), Colby Robb (13:37, 24th) and Drake Apablasa (13:41, 27th).
Sequim's Joel Christopher took 28th in the sophomore race (14:14).
"Overall, everybody ran well; in particular, the varsity boys had exceptional races," Sequim coach Harold Huff said.
It was Clifford who stole the show, topping all 109 freshman boys from such cross country powerhouse schools as Gig Harbor (4A), Peninsula (3A) and Northwest Christian-Lacey (B).
It's the first time any Sequim runner has won any race at the Capital Invite since Huff began coaching the squad.
Sequim took just two females to the Capital Invite. Senior Taylor Roads (16:45) finished 27th out of 81 runners; Kingston High senior Ruby Roberts took top honors among seniors with a 14:11 finish, winning by 32 seconds. Sequim senior Alli Cutting, the defending cross country 2A champ, did not race.
Sequim freshman Amelia Ohnstad (19:19) was 40th in her grade division race.
The Wolves are back in action Saturday at the Salt Creek Invitational just west of Port Angeles. More than 20 teams are committed to the event, including all nine Olympic League teams and five class 4A schools.