Boys’ Cross Country Wins Fresno Invite

Jessica Rosiak, Sports Editor

The varsity boys’ and frosh soph boys’ cross country squads topped their respective fields at the Roughrider Invitational in Woodward Park on October 12.  The Friday afternoon meet allows for a purview of the same Fresno venue that will be used for the state championships at the end of November.

While the boys showed impressive depth with their top 5 scorers all finishing in the top 20 of the small school division field, Campolindo’s defending state championship girls’ squad dropped to 4th in the team score, 1 place behind North Coast Section division 3 rival Carondelet.

“The girls seemed to struggle with the intensity of the race, but that’s okay with these kinds of races because they’re supposed to get better as the season goes along, and they will as they get healthy. Girls, getting the whole team back together, that’s the big thing. I think they’re missing 2 or 3 of their top 7,” said coach Tim Hunter.

The top 4 runners for varsity boys were within 23 seconds of each other, and each finished in the top 7.  The total combined time of the squad’s top 5 finishers was 3 seconds faster than Campolindo’s performance at the 2017 state meet.

Hunter said, “I thought that the guys had to overcome a lack of competition in the race. A lot of teams were in the big school race and not in the small school race, so there wasn’t a ton of competition.” Hunter added that he thinks they could have run faster with the extra pressure.

In the frosh soph race, sophomore Alex Clare improved over his time from last year by 1 minute and 16 seconds on the 2.1 mile course.

Senior Natalie Arnswald improved by 1 minute and 27 seconds on the varsity 5 kilometer course.

Only a select group who “are most committed to this sport and [Coach Woolridge] can tell have been showing improvement and have been going out there and giving it their best” were allowed to attend the competition, said junior Alicia Hober, who was the Cougars’ top finisher in the varsity race.

“Everyone who goes there knows they have a job to do. They are there to run the race and perform their best,” added sophomore Jack Peiper, who competed in the varsity boys’ race.

According to Hober, the meet was “good practice for when we go back there for state.”

“We’re just finishing up our 3rd phase; the 4th phase starts next week, so this is when it gets fun,” said Hunter.