CLOVIS — On Saturday the Paso Robles Bearcats boys and girls varsity cross-country teams traveled to Clovis to compete in the ASICS Clovis Invitational. The Bearcats have been hot as of late and continued their success this weekend with the boys team finishing second out of 35 teams and the girls finishing 19th out of 29 schools, but posting a faster time than they did just two weeks ago. The boys finished second only to Rocklin, which is the number one ranked team in the San Joaquin Section and ranked tenth overall in the State for Division 2. Teams from the Bay Area all the way down to San Diego made the trip to Woodward Park Saturday for the meet that is often referred to as the “Pre-State Meet” because it showcases so many strong teams from all areas of the state.
Pablo Cortes led the boys team once again. Cortes finished fourth overall in the race with a time of 16:01 followed by Damian Gavilan who finished eleventh overall with a time of 16:15. Ian Young and Steven Scruggs finished 33rd and 42nd respectively to round out the Bearcats finishing in the top 50. The best story of the day actually came from the varsity boys who finished lowest for the Bearcats. Paso Robles tied for second place on Saturday with Bella Vista High School with 158 points each. The tie breaker comes down to the sixth runner on each team, and the Bearcats usual seventh runner Alex Ruiz was able to surge into the sixth spot, recording a personal record in the process, finishing seventy-eighth overall with a time of 17:05 and giving the second place position to Paso Robles.
On top of finishing second overall the Bearcats beat their league opponents Arroyo Grande, ranked seventh in Division 2 of the CIF Southern Section. With this being the second time the Bearcats have bested the Eagles of AG they have now vaulted their way into the top ten of teams in Division 2, actually replacing AG at seven and dropping them down to number nine. With the end of the season coming into focus it appears the Bearcats will have boys representing Paso Robles in the State Meet for the first time ever in Division 2.
The Lady Bearcats team pushed through soreness, sickness and fatigue and were still able to put up a faster team time than they did two weeks ago. Some injuries kept the girls from operating at full strength, but still have high expectations for the end of the season. The freshman duo of Grace Chamberlain and Madi Loff once again led the way for Paso Robles, the two push the team and each other, finishing just a single second apart on Saturday.