Coronado’s girls and Foothill’s boys couldn’t have asked for a much better day Saturday.
Both cross country teams got the chance to show off their depth, and both swept their respective races at the Falcon Invitational at Foothill.
The Cougar girls, helped by a first-place finish from senior Lauren Lucas, breezed to victory in the junior/senior girls race. Coronado runners took four of the top six places in the freshman/sophomore girls race to hold off Foothill.
Lucas staved off a challenge from Durango junior Stacie Mitchell to win in 15 minutes, 53.8 seconds on the 2.5-mile course. Mitchell was second in 15:56.
“It was a tough race with Stacie (Mitchell) from Durango directly behind me the entire race,” Lucas said. ”She definitely pushed me as well as knowing that some of my teammates were fairly close behind her. I gave it my all, and I felt good about the race.”
Coronado junior Erin Smith was third in 16:03, followed by classmate Kristal Hosaka in 16:23, as the Cougars finished with 22 points. Foothill was second with 65.
The Cougars’ depth was key in the freshman/sophomore girls race with sophomore Samantha Harrison taking second in 16:40 and classmates Kelsey Kincaid (17:29) and Kylie Schmidt (17:32) finishing fourth and fifth, respectively. Coronado freshman Ashley Godfrey was sixth in 17:40.
“We have a strong and solid girls team with a lot of depth and excellent talent,” Coronado coach Mark Tondryk said.
Coronado had a team score of 28. Foothill was second with 43, helped by a third-place finish from sophomore Sage Long (17:07).
Tech freshman Taylor Coss won the race in 16:23.9.
“It was a difficult race, but I did feel really strong and in control during the race,” Coss said.
In the boys junior/senior race, Foothill junior Carl Greene posted the day’s best time, finishing in 13:12 to beat Durango’s Jaime Mitchell by six seconds.
The Falcons only had three runners in the top 11 — Greene, third-place Brian Arvizu (13:26) and seventh-place Craig Walker (13:58) — but still won the meet with 37 points. Coronado was second with 52.
Durango, which finished third with 71 points, had three runners in the top six. Mitchell was second with junior Matt Shelton (13:29) placing fourth and classmate Nick Ruiz (13:51) finishing sixth, but the Trailblazers’ fourth and fifth runners couldn’t keep up the pace.
In the freshman/sophomore race, the Falcons used a solid pack of runners who finished in sixth, seventh, eighth and ninth to hold off Coronado.
Led by freshman Brian Marshall’s second-place finish in 14:27, the Falcons had a team score of 28. Coronado had 38.
Foothill freshmen Eli Ward (14:54) and Arie Dennis (15:01) and sophomores Skyler Bench (15:07) and Caleb Luks (15:13) ran well as a pack, pushing each other throughout the race, en route to taking the sixth- through ninth-place spots.
Coronado’s Austin Parker won the race in 14:16.
“We have a decent amount of depth and a lot of talent in our boys team this year, and they proved it today by winning both races,” Foothill coach Tim Simonis said. “They work hard, stay focused and push each other as a team in a healthy competitive way.
“The season is just beginning, and I have a very optimistic outlook about our boys team.”