RESULTS AT BOTTOM OF PAGE
Goltra Wins, Leads Boys to Best NCS Team Score; Sun Improves by 1:20 as Girls Extend State Meet Top Ten Streak
In the individual duel of the day, Aidan Goltra (14) stalked Myles Smith of St. John Bosco through two miles on the Woodward Park course at Saturday's CIF cross country championships. The Campolindo junior stayed glued to the state meet favorite, covering each surge as the lead pack thinned out over the second mile.
With about one kilometer left, Smith pushed hard. While Goltra was able to respond, the move dropped Redwood's Fred Huxam, setting up a riveting one on one battle down the final stretch.
As the lead tandem hit the pavement with 500 meters to the finish, Smith held a stride advantage. Both athletes appeared to be at their limit. Then, as they gained the grass, just 70 meters from the line, Goltra found one last burst of energy that propelled him to the lead.
Goltra crossed the finish just a fraction of a second ahead, earning the California Division III individual crown, the first boys' title in school history. His time of 15:18 is also a new school record on the 5k championship course.
Meanwhile, Adam Hathaway (13), Walter Brennan (14) and Ben Weinberg (14) clustered in the top 75 to help the squad earn a 6th place team score, just ahead of NCS rivals Bishop O'Dowd and Miramonte. Weinberg's 16:43 knocked four seconds off his previous course best.
On the girls' side, Brighie Leach (15) continued her impressive front running, landing a 13th place finish with a 29 second improvement on the course. Also earning a new course best was Hana Sun (16), who broke the 20 minute mark to knock 1:20 off her mark from the Roughrider Invite.
Mary Orders (15) came alive for the girls' squad, taking over the third scoring position to finish 81st.
Senior Sarah Orders (13) wrapped up her high school career with a season best , cracking 20 minutes and improving on her October performance on the same course by over 90 seconds.
The girls' 9th place score pushed the team's top ten state meet streak to 8 years!
CIF cross country championships: Campolindo High's Aidan Goltra wins Division III title
By Phil Jensen
FRESNO -- Campolindo High's Aidan Goltra had a question that kept entering his mind as he was attempting to hold off Myles Smith of St. John Bosco-Bellflower for first place in the final straightaway of Saturday's California Interscholastic Federation Division III boys state cross country championship race.
Can I give more?
Goltra gave enough. The junior held off Smith by less than a second to win the state title with an excellent time of 15 minutes, 18 seconds for the 3.1-mile Woodward Park course. "That was quite the race," said Goltra, who transferred from Las Lomas to Campolindo before this school year. "The critical point was the turn with about 1,000 meters to go."
That's where Goltra took the lead for the first time, then battled Smith for it through the final 300 meters. Goltra was among a pack of four who passed through two miles at 9:54. Goltra is the first Campolindo boys runner to win a state cross country title, according to coach Chuck Woolridge.
The St. Joseph Notre Dame boys showed their tremendous depth in winning the school's first team state cross country championship. The Pilots edged Flintridge Prep-La Canada Flintridge to win the Division V title by one point, 86-87. "We all fought to the end," said the Pilots' Gabe Arias-Sheridan, who led his team with a fifth-place individual finish (15:58).
Other Pilots scorers were Michael Murphy (25th, 16:30), Louis Rodrigues (26th, 16:34), Matthew Murphy (28th, 16:35) and Sam Levy-Wendt (33rd, 16:43),
Fong has experienced an extremely emotional last two weeks. His wife, Denise, died of breast cancer Nov. 13. "We were trying to win (the state race) for Tony," Arias-Sheridan said.
Amador Valley's Jena Pianin ran an outstanding race to finish third in the Division I girls competition in 17:39. That's the best placing by an East Bay girl in a Division I state championship cross country race since 1989. "(Amador Valley coach Jason Oswalt) said to chase (the leaders) as long as you can and get in that good position if anything bad happens up front," said Pianin, who was fifth in 2011. "I'm pretty confident in my ability to really crush the last mile."
Pianin was in the fastest girls race of the day by far. Simi Valley's Sarah Baxter set a course record with a jaw-dropping time of 16:40, and defending champion Hagen Reedy of Buchanan-Clovis was second (17:10).
Other East Bay individual runners who achieved top-six finishes included Miramonte's Tyler Hanson (fourth in the Division III boys race, 15:32), and St. Joseph Notre Dame's Kimberly Avalos (sixth in the Division V girls race, 18:43).
Sixth-place team finishes were achieved by Campolindo's boys in Division III, Athenian's boys in Division V and College Prep's girls in Division V.
St. John Bosco 70, Palos Verdes 119, Brea Olinda 157, Oak Park 195, Jurupa Hills 198, Campolindo 219, Bishop O'Dowd 219, Miramonte 231, St. Ignacius 252, Paso Robles 253, Placer 263, Beverly Hills 291, El Dorado 328, Valley Center 369, Will C. Wood 375, El Capitan 376, Castle Park 385, Roosevelt 431, Acalanes 483, Shasta 484, Sacred Heart 520, Aptos 527, Ridgeview 651
Bonita 83, Cathedral 143, Palos Verdes 160, Laguna Hills 186, Northwood 222, Las Lomas 222, Vista Del Lago 222, Acalanes 233, Campolindo 234, Canyon Crest 256, La Canada 266, Del Oro 274, Aptos 278, El Capitan 297, Redwood 323, Oak Park 359, Santa Margarita 371, St. Ignacius 395, McFarland 483, Sacred Heart 503, Rio Americano 549, Chico 670