Vikings take best finish at Stanford
If South Tahoe ever wondered whether it had the depth to win a regional cross country championship, the speculation was put to rest Saturday.
The Viking boys’ cross country team took its best ever finish at the Stanford Invitational cross country meet finishing seventh out of 40 teams in Division III. It finished ninth last year and 11th in 2002.
South Tahoe competed in one of five divisions that included nearly 500 runners. Overall, the Stanford Invitational is among the largest races for South Tahoe runners all year.
All seven of its runners finished in the top 50 percent, with some surprising finishes from its youngest runners.
But it was senior Hudson Wilvers as the top Viking despite his allergies.
He finished 24th in the 3-mile (5,000-meter) race out of 209 runners with a time of 16 minutes, 23 seconds.
Ahead of by more than a minute was the first-place finisher Alex Dunn, from San Lorenzo Valley High School, with a time of 15:20. The time set a new Division III record.
Behind Dunn was Jake Schmidt (2nd, 15:21) from Redwood High, and Sean Barrett, (3rd, 15:27) from Saint Augustine High School.
Behind Wilvers from South Tahoe was sophomore Alex Sharp at 43rd, who had a “break out” race with a time of 16:38.
“We were really proud of his effort and the way he ran. He ran very, very well,” said Viking boys head coach Dominique Westlake.
Also with a strong finish was fellow sophomore Bryan Kurek, who finished 55th at 16:53.
Behind Kurek was senior Chris Cosmi, who often trades steps with Wilvers as the Vikings’ lead runner.
He finished 57th with a time of 16:58.
Behind Cosmi from South Tahoe was Zach Powers (63rd, 17:03), Kyle Sullivan (80th, 17:20) and Sean Pawling (101st, 17:42).
Hudson finished the first mile with the leaders with a split time of 5:05. Cosmi, Sharp, Kurek and Powers were right behind him at 5:10.
“As pack they were running well,” Westlake said. But the course got stepper and the Vikings began passing runners. When it came to the downhill, the other runners returned the favor.
“We could have easily been top five as a team. But we lost some points with some guys not running their standard races … that tells me our leg speed wasn’t there, which I knew,” Westlake said. “We have to work on that over the next month to be able to keep pace with those leaders.”
Still, the Vikings improved considerably from the start of the year. At the recent Nevada Union Invitational, the Vikings top five runners’ combined time was five minutes less than Reno and Galena. At Stanford, the Vikings were behind by 2 1/2 minutes.
“So we’re getting better,” Westlake said. “Overall I was very pleased with our performance.”
The girls finished 17th out of 33 teams in Division III, exactly where they finished last year.
Amber Ramos was the top Viking at 55th with a time of 20 minutes flat.
Although she finished higher last year, Ramos’ time was less this year.
“It was a great day for running. It was cool and overcast,” said girls’ coach Doug Watenpool.
The leader, Clara Viehweg, from Saint Ignacious High School, finished in just over 18 minutes.
Behind Ramos for the Vikings was Megan Hillyard (83rd, 20:37), Anna Lambdin (94th, 20:43), Vanessa Porfiri (115th, 21:17), Karen Dalmacio (121st, 21:29), Caitlin Robinson (164th, 22:36) and Amanda Hammond (184th, 23:21).
Arana finishes fourth in Dayton Invitational
Christina Arana finished fourth and her Warriors third out of seven teams during the Dayton Invitational on Friday in Dayton.
Arana’s medal-placing time in the 5-kilometer run was 25 minutes, 35 seconds. Kim McGlothlin also earned a medal by taking 10th in 27:02. Other Warrior result swere Aly VanDeusen, 15th, 28:33; Kristen Kline, 21st, 31:12; and Nika Hsiao, 23rd, 31:56.
“They’re working as a group and really showing up on race day,” said WHS coach Brian Rippet.
The boys finished sixth out of 12 teams behind Oscar Suarez’s medal peformance. Suarez was eighth in 20:06. Also for the Warriors, Danny Mitchell came in 27th, 21:15; Justin Alexander, 31st, 21:24, Mike Chilton, 37th, 21:51; and Brian Beebe, 38th, 21:58.
The Warriors will compete in the Artichoke Invitational on Saturday.
— Tribune Sports Editor Steve Yingling contributed to this story.
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