SAN LUIS OBISPO —Last Thursday was the final day of the PAC 8 Cross Country season and with it, the reign of the Paso Robles Bearcats boys team continues with a fourth consecutive league title. Of the four wins, this season was the closest race and came down to only a single point. The Bearcats competition this season was the Arroyo Grande Eagles and according to Athletic Director Anthony Morales, “...It was a man-on-man dogfight to the finish.” he said. The race was closeout throughout the entire course, each team placing a runner in front of someone from the opposing school, someone they knew they had to beat. AG was able to finish in front of the Bearcats no.1 and no.5 runner, but Paso’s no.2, no.3, and no.4 runners all finished in front of their Eagle opponents. For the majority of the race, AG was in the lead but Paso had a strong push at the end of the course to give them the lead 35-36. Pablo Cortes finished second overall and tied the school record for the course set by Trad Berti in 2016 when he finished with a time of 15:47. Steven Scruggs finished fifth overall and second for the team with a time of 16:19:21. Damien Galivan finished seventh overall and third for the Bearcats coming in at 16:21:52, Michael Hernandez finished twelfth in the race running 16:35:90 and Jason Scruggs finished
If the Bearcats were susceptible to losing their crown it would have been this season because the team is young and because they graduated some of their senior leaders to Division 1 Universities. With only one senior on the roster this season, the Bearcats dynasty will look to continue next year in the Central Section where they dominated all year.
The Bearcats girls cross country team also ran well on Thursday and pushed all the way into third place in the PAC 8 when they were slotted in the four spot for most of the year. The girl's team shaved over two minutes off of their mid-season time on Thursday and are over three minutes faster than the CIF team from a year ago. Freshman Grace Chamberlain led the Bearcats finishing eighth overall with a time of 20:32:14 and was followed closely by teammate Jasmine Rangel who finished ninth with a time of 20:37:21. Madeline Loff finished eighteenth (21:14:24), Maya Caselli finished twentieth (21:28:74), and Jill Schlickeiser finished twenty-second with a time of 21:36:18. The girls final time was 1:45:28 with their final score being 77.
This last weekend the boys and girls cross country teams traveled to Riverside to run in the Division 2 prelims where the top 26 teams would advance. The Boys had another fantastic showing placing first in Division 2 with 78 points. Pablo Cortes led the Bearcats once again finished seventh overall setting a personal best with a time of 15:24.3. All of the Bearcats top five runners placed in the top 26 places in the race. Steven Scruggs finished eleventh, Damien Galivan finished fourteenth, Michael Hernandez finished twentieth and Ian Young finished twenty-sixth.
The girl's team finished in fourteenth place overall with 369 total points. Jasmine Rangel was the fastest Lady Bearcats on Saturday placing thirty sixths when she set a personal record with a time of 19:04.9. Rangel was the only girl Bearcat to finish inside the top 75. Only the