Islander Cross Country Season Underway

Landon Mullins at Vaquero

Although the league competition for Cross Country is still over a month away, the cross country team has already competed in two Invitational Meets. On August 24th we took a partial squad to Lakeside to run in the Vaquero Stampede, a traditional season-opener for many San Diego teams for the last 35 years. Of its three divisions, we chose to compete in the fastest, for the competition. The first race was the D-1 Frosh/Soph girls. Last year’s middle school star Dana Jennings placed 7th with a time of 9:58 over the flat 1.65-mile course, out of 135 finishers. Our second finisher was Allison White, who ran 11:35, followed by Anna Youngblood in 11:51, then Ryan Brophy. The Frosh/Soph boys were up next over the same course with Landon Mullins placing 15th with a time of 8:51. Tim Shumaker placed 34th in 9:31, followed by Nolan Reuter (45th in 9:47), and Conor Youngblood (68th in 10:16). There were 201 finishers.

Members of the girls’ Cross Country Team at the Vaquero Invite. From left are Jessica Ehret, Sofia Van Arsdale, Dana Jennings, and Abby Hundley.

The third event was the girls’ Junior/Senior race in which Abigail Hundley place third with a time of 9:41, followed by Sofia Van Arsdale who placed fourth in 9:50, and Jessica Ehret who placed 18th with 10:28. When all three girls’ divisions were combined, we placed 8th out of the 42 schools with full teams at the meet.

Aiden Baumann at Vaquero

Our final event was the boys’ Junior/Senior race over 2.15 miles. Aiden Baumann was our first runner to finish with a time of 12:21. Next was Cole Hutcherson in 12:28, then Micha Arnott in 12:59, and Will Leonard in 13:37.

Casey Harris at Wolf Pack

We had our second meet of the season last Friday at the Wolf Pack Invitational, hosted by West Hills High School. Because of the Labor Day weekend, we didn’t have a full squad available, but several of our runners had good showings. These early meets are at a shorter distance than the 5000-meter races that we’ll be running later in the season. The boys’ course was 2.1 miles long over a dusty course with rolling hills. The divisions were by sex and grade-level only. Our best performance for the boys on hand was turned in by Casey Harris in the senior race. Casey navigated the course with a respectable time of 11 minutes and 11 seconds. When converted to a 5k time, his performance equates to around 16:56, pretty good for this time of the season.

Gio Navarro at Wolf Pack

Gio Navarro also broke 12 minutes in the boys’sophomore race with a time of 11:53, followed by Conor Youngblood with 13:16.

Cole Hutcherson at Wolf Pack

We had a tight pack in the boys’ junior race with Cole Hutcherson leading the way with a time of 12:10, followed by Aiden Baumann in 12:20, Micah Arnott in 12:28, and Will Leonard in 12:32.

Ryan Brophy at Wolf Pack

Only one girl ran on Friday. Ryan Brophy ran 12:50 over the 1.5-mile girls’ course.

Finally, a few of our top girls ran in the 55th annual Balboa Four Mile run put on by the San Diego Track Club at Balboa Park as a workout. The course is extremely hilly and quite a challenge for anyone. Abigail Hundley, Dana Jennings, and Jessica Ehret placed 1-2-3 in the girls’ 13-18 division with times of 29:25, 30:09, and 30:56. Our next event will be the Bronco Roundup hosted by Rancho Bernardo High School at Kit Carson Park this Saturday.


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