Placer boys win first FVL XC title

Del Oro individuals keep torrid pace
By: Nick Pecoraro
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ROSEVILLE– With all the success the Placer football team has had in 2018, it’s the Hillmen boys cross-country team that can claim a school first.


“It’s the first (Foothill Valley League) banner in school history,” said Placer head coach Kevin Vasquez.


The Hillmen boys cross-country team indeed claimed the school’s first FVL championship at Maidu Park with a team score of 28, which was 14 points in front of runner-up Nevada Union.


Jesus Guerra-Reyes led the Hillmen as he’s done all season, coming in second place behind only Nevada Union’s Garrett Gough. The Placer senior set a personal-best mark of 14 minutes, 55.88 seconds in the 3-mile run.


Jesus Carrasco followed in third place at 14:57.35 and Connor Ryan posted a season-best in fourth place at 15:46.38.


“To have three boys sub-15 – that’s flying,” said Vasquez.


Devin Muzzy came in eighth, Brendan Moley finished 11th, Andrew Davis 21st, Austin Lee 28th, Wesley Moore 42nd, David Jepsen 60th, Mitchell Moreland 66th and Henry Cox 71st for the Hillmen.


Guerra-Reyes, Carrasco, Ryan and Muzzy were named to the All-League team.


Placer’s girls came in third by a narrow margin. Nevada Union’s girls won the race with 49 points, Ponderosa came in second at 60 points, and Placer finished just three points behind the Bruins. Oakmont finished fourth and Lincoln fifth.


Ponderosa freshman Natalie Wieland won the girls 3-mile at 17:56.57. Lincoln’s Destiny Everett finished second at 18:05.77 and Saedy Williamson fourth at 19:02.12. Oakmont’s Ashley Mendenhall came in third at 18:53.97.


Placer’s highest finisher was senior Riley Lasher, who set a personal mark of 19:27.94. Maddie Lasher placed ninth (20:08.55) as both were named to the All-League team.


All the FVL teams saved their best for when it counted most. A walloping 83 percent of the boys varsity runners posted personal records, and close to 85 percent of the girls runners did the same.


Alison Wright finished 12th, Grace Holness 15th, Abigail Jones 21st, Kate Haydon 23rd, Chloe Moore 27th, Diana Diaz-Guerra 30th and Sofia Ramos 41st.


Up next for the Placer is the CIF Sac-Joaquin Subsection Meet at the Calaveras County Fairgrounds set for Nov. 3.


Oakmont’s boys came in third with 54 points, including five runners in the Top 20. Sam Marchetti finished sixth at 16:01.29, Luke Davies (ninth, 16:15.49), Landon Shea (10th, 16:15.68), Colin Wong (12th, 16:29.0) and Javed Saliman (17th, 16:54.15).


Also impressive were the Frosh/Soph Hillmen boys, who were nearly perfect in claiming their FVL title Tuesday.


The Hillmen had seven runners in the Top 10 and nine in the Top 13. Wyatt Hamilton, Vance Byer, Evan Donner and Alec Smith went 1-2-3-4 for Placer, which had a team score of 16.


“Sixteen points is one off of 15, which is a perfect score in cross-country,” Vasquez said. “The future looks bright. A lot of us coaches were wide-eyed just watching those boys.”


Golden Eagles stay on top of their perch


In what has become a familiar outcome this 2018 season, the top individual spots of this weekend’s cross-country races were claimed by Del Oro Golden Eagles.


At Saturday’s Bella Vista Bronco Invitational at Johnson Springview Park, Del Oro senior Brayden McLaughlin set a personal record in the small school boys 5,000-meter run at 15 minutes, 32.24 seconds, while freshman Riley Chamberlain took first in the girls race at 17:43.01 for her sixth win in seven races this year.


The Del Oro boys took third overall as a team with the help of 17th-place Bryan Stafford (17:16.65) and personal records from 22nd-place Garrett LaPlante (17:36.22) and 30th-place Ben Edwards (17:44.76).


The Del Oro girls finished second behind Vista del Lago, led by Chamberlain, Alissa Pessin (14th, 20:25.79) and Chloe Jeppson (19th, 21:00.5). The Golden Eagles got personal records from Emilie Mertz (21:02.94), Jenna Barba (21:50.82), Emma Harrison (22:19.17) and Anika Bragg (23:59.59).


Elsewhere at the Bronco Invite, the Granite Bay boys team finished third overall with 184 points. Junior Michael Zagaynov led the Grizzlies at 16:47.8 in 23rd place. Right behind him in 24th was Roseville’s Trenton Arcia, who clocked in at 16:48.5 for the 11th-place Tigers.


The Granite Bay girls were led by Mia Taylor, who placed 18th at 19:56.47, and got personal records from Lindsay Konieczny, Lauren Russell, Eva Shaw, Natalie Head and Mary Wiederhold.

Next for the Grizzlies is the Sierra Foothill League finals Oct. 26.


The Whitney Wildcats were represented individually in the Top 20 by sophomore Ajani Salcido, who paced a personal record 16:28.5 in the boys’ large school run.


In the girls’ large school race, Lincoln’s Destiny Everett placed fifth overall at 19:07.09, and teammate Saedy Williamson set a personal-best 19:37.16 in 11th place for the Zebras, who finished 12th as a team.


In the small school races, Western Sierra’s girls placed fifth overall with junior two-time section champion Sara Sabra placing eighth overall at a season-best mark of 19:36.01. Senior Rhiannon Repetti came in 25th at 21:30.44 and Hayley Repetti 45th (23:19.86) for the Wolves.


The Wolves’ boys team placed 15th behind 25th-place Connor Dilliner (17:40.88).


The Placer boys team finished second to Vista del Lago in the small schools race, led by Guerra-Reyes (2nd, 15:54.17), Carrasco (3rd, 16:06.36) and Muzzy (10th, 17:02.33). Moley rounded out the top 20 at 17:26.95.


The fourth-place Placer girls team was led by Riley Lasher, who was the only Hillmen representative to finish inside the top 20, in 18th place at 20:53.05.


The Colfax girls came in sixth as a team, led by Sierra Hagen, who set a season-record at 20:36.49, and Emma Sanders (22:23.39) and Mackenzie Kettwig (23:35.36), who both set personal records. The Falcon boys placed 10th behind 27th-place Connor Vrooman (17:42.13).


Bear River’s girls were led by Grace McDaniel (22:09.94) for an eighth-place team finish, while the Bruin boys placed 18th behind Sean Huska (19:05.82) and Sean Cullers (19:50.62).


The Falcons and Bruins are off until the CIF Subsections Nov. 3, at the Calaveras County Fairgrounds.


Monterey Bay Invitational


The Foresthill girls cross-country team placed 13th as a team at Saturday’s Monterey Bay Invitational. The Wildfires were led by a personal-best 21:22.9 in the girls 3-mile race from senior Elizabeth Bradley.


Foresthill next competes in the Central Valley California League championships at Old Mill Course Oct. 24.