On the girls side, the team was unable to match their performance from the week before, though the team of Maria Mendoza, Andrea Ortiz, Elizabeth Guevara, Gabriela Aguilar, Jennifer Custodio and Daisy Nava became the first JL girls team ever to have 6 girls under 23 minutes in one race with Daisy coming across the line in a huge pr of 22:57. The girls are aiming for a 12th place finish at BVAL finals which would likely grant them a place in CCS Finals.
The Frosh/Soph boys team has been incomplete for several meets, but Erik Olsvold and Austin Swank ran big PRS of 18:18 and 20:34 respectively. Erik as a freshmen has a very bright outlook for the future.
The reserve teams had strong performances in particular from Ryan Puzon, who broke 20 minutes for the course as the team's number 2 runner. The reserve team is in a position to aim for a top half finish at league finals.
When the populations of each CCS school were done for the 2015-2016 school year, they revealed that James Lick is the 2nd smallest school in the 24 team BVAL. 6 of the league's schools have more than twice as many students to draw from. As a result, anything better than a second to last finish for the team is a testament to the Comets ability to rise above their circumstances, and outperform expectations. The James Lick Cross Country team will look to demonstrate that exact strength at league finals 11/2/15.
The Frosh/Soph Race got things started with a few fantastic individual performances. Freshmen Vincent Giglio, and Erik Olsvold placed 2nd and 3rd overall, in 18:10 and 18:14, faster than any freshmen in the race. The Alum Rock Course, wasn’t used at all from 2001-2007, but has been run at least every other year since 2008. In that time, no freshmen from James Lick has run faster than Vincent or Erik did, and this is just after the first race. Sophomore and FS team captain Jesus Deloya had a rough race due to injury, but still finished 10th overall in 19:19, a league race PR. It was not until 21:14 had elapsed that Austin Swank finished as the team’s 4th runner, (32nd overall) while Rene Bravo finished the team’s scoring at 22:05 in 42nd place. Isaak Herrera ran 22:55 and Juan Carlos-Rios in his first big school race, ran 26:28. The Frosh/Soph Boys beat Sobrato, 20-36 as well as Oak Grove 21-40. Their two losses were heartbreaking close as they fell to Leigh 28-29 and Branham 28-28 with Branham winning by merit of tiebreaker (which 6th runner was faster). They start their season 2-2 overall.
The strongest performance of the day, was unsurprisingly from the group that has been the most motivated, the Varsity Boys. In recent years The Varisty Boys have struggled with inconsistency and underperformance, as well as a deficit in the raw talent which made the team successful for most of it’s history. The group of boys this year, lead by Captain Hector Ramirez, set their sights on changing that this year, by working hard through the summer with the goal of making CCS and proving they could be competitive in the B league.
The team did just that, despite underperformance by several boys. Nathan Bernardo placed 5th overall in a great season opening time of 16:33. Hector Ramirez placed 9th in 17:02, while this is a 48 second league race PR for Hector, we are convinced he is already capable of faster. Inteus Castro-Lopez placed 16th in17:28, Gustavo Aguilera had a rough race but placed 18th in 17:37, and Azael Zamora was the 5th guy in17:55 and 21st place overall. Jesse Chircop ran a huge PR of 18:15 and Gustavo Parra continues to progress towards full fitness with a time of 18:38. A far cry from last year’s first league race where Nathan was the 1st JL boy in 18:04. The team beat all 4 teams they faced, the closest dual being a 23-32 victory over Leigh. Had all 8 teams raced each other today, they only would have lost to Pioneer, setting the stage for a very good season for the team.
The JV girls finished off the scoring races with a 2-2 record like their Varsity counterparts, beating the same teams, Oak Grove and Branham, again. They were lead by Jennifer Custodio, who ran a strong JV time of 24:37 for 12th place. Evalilia Garcia ran 25:05 for 17th, and Jocelyn Aguirre ran 25:59 for 21st. This was a strong trio for the team without Julia Cruz who is expected to be a key contributor. Analilia Regla finished 28th with a time of 27:38, and Christine Young ran 27:59 for by far the best race of her high school career. Denisse Calixto ran a solid JV time of 28:08 and Susie Peterson finished in 30:03 to cap off the team. Diana Romero ran 32:04 in the reserve race.
The Boys Reserve was spearheaded by Miguel Chavez in 22:07, Joseph Benitez was next in a strong starting time of 22:27. Thomas Estrada was next in 23:05, then Ryan Puzon and Ivan Adan-Ramirez came in together at 23:20 and 23:21. Ivan Morales clocked in a 23:42 and Manuel Urango finished the team’s day in 30:51.
Overall it was a great race for the team, every division showed they belong in the STAL and will work to be a force going forward.