CLOVIS — The Paso Robles Cross Country Team split into two this last weekend as they sent their varsity squad to Clovis to compete in the Golden Eagle Cross Country Invite and their Junior Varsity and Frosh/Soph teams to the Atascadero Invitational at Santa Margarita Lake on Saturday. Both teams experienced great success and showed the real depth the Bearcats have on their cross-country team this season.
In Clovis, the varsity boys team took first place out of 27 teams, even though a computer glitch inflated their score (using their sixth place runner’s time instead of the fifth place runner) according to Athletic Director Anthony Morales. Paso Robles beat out teams like Madera South, who were the 2016 CIF Central Section Division 1 Champions, Ridgeview, the 2016 CIF Central Section Division 3 runner up, and even league rival Arroyo Grande.
Junior racer Pablo Cortez finished first for the Bearcats and eighth overall with a time of 16:23.1, and Senior Ian Young finished eleventh overall with a time of 16:36.6. The Bearcats had five runners that all finished within the top 25 times in the race. Steven Scruggs and Damien Gavilan finished fifteenth and sixteenth overall and Michael Hernandez finished twenty-fourth.
The Lady Bearcats also raced well, finishing fifth out of twenty-two teams. Paso Robles was led by their two excellent freshman runners Madeline Loff and Grace Chamberlain who finished twenty-third and twenty-ninth respectively. This meet was made up of primarily Central Section teams and helped get the Bearcats ready for their move to the new section next season. The strong outing for the Bearcats team has them currently ranked as the number one team in the Central Section even though they currently compete in the Southern Section.
While the Boys varsity was busy winning in Clovis, the Boys Frosh/Soph team did the same at Santa Margarita Lake. The boys team was led by a first and second place finish by Alejandro Ruiz and Devin Dobroth. All together the boys placed five runners in the top thirteen and seven in the top seventeen, a dominant performance. Not to be outdone by the boys, the Lady Bearcats JV team also placed first in their race. The girls were led by Maria Santiago and Emily Mathein and placed five girls in the top fifteen overall. This is the first win for the girls JV team at the Atascadero & Brug Invitational, and is made even more impressive with the fact that the varsity took two JV runners with them due to injuries.
The Bearcats Cross-Country team will be all together this Friday as they head to Visalia looking for another victory.