After last week’s performances, the prospects for the Section Finals looked really good for the CB XC team. Varsity teams were set to compete for the championship and a trip to Fresno for a spot at the CIF State Cross Country Championships and the sub-varsity teams were battling for Section Titles in the ONLY section that offers sub-varsity titles. The Falcons did not disappoint! With 26/39 CB runners setting new PR’s and anther eight setting season’s bests, no, the Falcons did not disappoint.
When the final race was run, CB had earned three second place awards and a Section Title for our 10th grade men’s team of Alex Chavez, Edwin Sperring, Marc Valdez, Jack Steen, Bromley Wyrauch, Rocco Giordano, and Brody Simi. This definitely bodes well for the future of XC for CB.
After a week of pleasant surprises, a couple of injuries, vacations, and soccer tournaments left us with a few holes in our rosters. For 10th grader Ella Johl, a disappointing Achilles strain would keep her from the race. Thankfully, Senior, Claire Carollo, was ready to step up. And did she ever step up! In a tight varsity women’s race, the team needed her to place as CB’s #5, a scoring position in cross country. Never having run a competitive varsity race, Claire was being asked to fill some big shoes. But she was absolutely ready. Although it is Claire’s first year running cross country and since day one, she has worked hard, shown steady improvement, and maintained a really positive attitude. Last week in an email right after Subs, she asked if there was any way she could keep training with the varsity women. I offered her the chance to keep training if we qualified for State. Little did either of us know that her self-confidence and grit would be needed so soon. Claire’s fifth place team finish and PR was a welcomed addition and just what the women’s team needed to ensure another trip to the State Finals.
Also in the D4 varsity race, ninth grader Paige Rupert (seventh place), was able to finish as CB’s second runner behind the gutsy running of teammate Elise Henderson (third place) despite knee pain. Alicia Romani (15th), Elise Perkins (26th), and Claire (34th) completed the scoring for CB. Allie Moya, in her final Section Race, along with Eyvonne Nguyen completed the team that earned their spot at State Champs.
In the Varsity men’s race, CB earned a second-place last weekend behind a very strong Hughson team but was looking for a potential upset as they stepped up to the line. Despite seven season’s best performances and 7 PRs from each CB runner, second was where we stood at the finish line and the awards ceremony. Sam Nealon (fourth) ran near the front the entire race but couldn’t hold on down the homestretch. Reign Saldana (14th) also had a superb race for the Falcons as he improved his time at Willow and earned second spot for CB. Running third, Tyler Simi was able to find another gear down the homestretch to earn third spot and a 16th place finish. 10th grader Alex Potter showed that he is not just speedy in the water but can be a threat on land as well finishing in the fourth spot for CB. As happened last weekend, Nikos Burciaga and Preston Rabey found sudden bursts in the final 250 meters to outrace several of their competitors. Bradley Bertossa, also put on a final burst to secure CB’s second place finish and another trip to Fresno.
Even having lost Claire to the varsity, our JV Women had a great showing in their race. Caitlyn Drew led the Falcons with Robin Sunada finishing nine spots behind. Ashley Lobo had another excellent race improving her time by 1:21.5 from her previous runs at Willow Hills. Even though they were unable to field a full team for the finals, the ninth/10th grade women’s team performed well. Arabella Lobo, Natalie Martin, Makenna Lynch, and Anna Katsandres showed up and raced well with Arabella earning a medal for her top ten finish.
Finally, for the ninth-grade men’s team, they too, earned a second-place finish behind super performances by Finn Rigby (third), John Buxie (10th), Nick Buckman (13th), Jonah Hrabe (14th), and Mason Edgett (15th), Jackson Levasseur, and Lucas Wagner.
It was a fantastic day to be a Falcon runner where we had a host of great races, and two teams earned another trip to the California State XC Championships. Yes, not a bad day at all.