Tristian Merchant Wins His Third Straight Alaska State Title

* Check out race video from the ASAA Division II Championship on Saturday

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Anchorage Christian (AK) senior Tristian Merchant made sure to make his last regular season high school race memorable. 

The MileSplit50 No. 2 ranked athlete set a new state and course record on the Kincaid Park course on Saturday in Anchorage at the Alaska School Activities Association Division II Championships, becoming the only Alaskan to drop a sub-15 performance on the course all-time and the only Alaskan to run sub-15 outright at the state championships ever as he won his third straight title in 14:51.

The ASAA moved to the Anchorage course in 2010. 

Merchant, a returning Team XC Nationals All-American, went through his first mile in 4:33, crossed the 2-mile split in a reported 9:01 and averaged 4:47 per mile. 

In order to ensure safety across the competition, the ASAA instituted less-than-10-runner wave starts, with each scoring member of state championship teams going off in groups. 

Merchant won his Division II race by over 100 seconds. Grace Christian's David Sliwinski was second overall in 16:33.

The performance for Merchant marked his second straight under 15 minutes for 5K, and it followed a Region 3 North Championship win in 14:41.32. On Sept. 18, Merchant also scored a sub-15 performance for 3-miles at the Christian Woodbridge meet, posting a time of 14:46.50.

Merchant was ranked fourth all-time on the Kincaid course prior to the competition on Saturday. He ran 15:27.90 on the same course a year ago. 

He finished his career having won his last 13 races on Alaska soil. 

Photo Credit: ACHS Sports

Graphic: MileSplit

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