Santa Fe Indian School girls run off with District 5-4A cross country championship over the 5,000-meter course at Sandia Park, with sophomore Iris Emery finishing third
Santa Fe Prep qualifies for state by taking third at 3-3A behind runner-up finish from 8th-grader Sophie Addison, three St. Michael’s harriers qualify in 4A along with Santa Fe High senior Daisy Gephart in 6A.
By ARNIE LESHIN, Santa Fe Today
Senior Elizabeth Lucero joined in with four sophomore teammates as Santa Fe Indian School ran off with the girl’s team championship at Friday afternoon’s District 5-4A hosted by East Mountain.
While East Mountain came away with the first two places over the 5,000-meter course in Sandia Park, the Braves took five of the next nine spots behind sophomore Iris Emery’s third place in 23:05.
In fifth was Lucero in 23:18, sophomore Hunter Garcia eighth in the time of 24:11, next came sophomore Franki M. Chavez in 24:44, and sophomore Diandra Toya ran 11th and clocked 25:36.
“It was a pretty tough course to run,” said Indian School head coach Joe Calabaza, “plenty of hills and rough spots, so I credit my girls for handling it.”
Next stop for the Braves will be Saturday’s state championships at Rio Rancho High. They are scheduled for an 11 a.m. start as the girls run first.
Indian School totaled 35 points, 10 better than second place East Mountain.
Taking first was sophomore Marissa Case of East Mountain in 22:30, with senior teammate Rubie Trotter 10 seconds behind.
In 2-6A hosted by Albuquerque Manzano and raced at Ben Greiner Park in Albuquerque, senior Daisy Gephart was the lone qualifier for Santa Fe High.
The Demonettes took third in district last year and eighth at state, but this time they were fourth-best and did not qualify as a team.
But Gephart, the team’s top runner all season, came in 14th in 21:18. Right behind in 16th was sophomore Maya Holder was in 21:35 and sophomore Brooke Guevara took 18th in 21:32, but only Gephart qualified.
Albuquerque Eldorado finished first with 23 points, with Albuquerque Sandia the runner-up with 62, and Albuquerque La Cueva qualifying with 79 points for the third spot. The Demonettes were next with 108, Clovis scored 129, and Manzano 133.
Rounding out the top five for Santa Fe High was junior Judith Allison finishing 32nd in 22:56, and senior Cassie Hoskisson three spots behind in 23:14.
In 2-4A hosted by St. Michael’s and raced over the MRC rugby field course, the Lady Horsemen ran fourth among the teams and did qualify as a team for the states. Junior Janai Clayton made state by placing eighth in the time of 21:13, with Taos taking the first three finishes behind senior freshman Ellia Katz’ winning time of twenty minutes.
“London (Luttrell) and Abbie (Leugers) also made state,” said St. Michael’s head coach Lenny Gurule. “The top three runners from a non-qualifying team make it to state.”
And in the team scoring, Taos took first with 33 points, Robertson next with 46, Pojoaque Valley third with 69, and four points behind was St. Michael’s with sophomore Luttrell 11th in the time of 21:23. One spot behind her was junior Leugers turning in a 21:23, junior Violet Eklund 19th in 22:05, and sophomore Lauren Cordova 23rd and clocked 22:59.
In 3-3A raced at Dulce, Santa Fe Prep qualified for state by finishing third in the team scoring with 57 points. Up-and-coming stellar 8th-grader Sophie Addison led the Griffins with a second-place in 22:16, and sophomore Chelsea Griscom took sixth in 22:56.
Then came freshman Anna Swanson placing 15th in 24 minutes, and sophomore Hayden Colfax 16th in 24:11. The fifth Prep harrier was junior Brooke Little racing 18th in 24:28.
In 2-5A at Espanola Valley. Capital senior Audrey Gonzales became the third Jaguar in a row to qualify for state, following on the heels of Brandy Romero in 2015 and Myra Flores in 2013 and 2014. Gonzales ran 21:20.
Running for the first time in awhile was Capital sophomore Emma George, who had been going back-and-forth with Gonzales during the season.
“Emma was first sick,” said head coach Rita Vigil, “and then broke an ankle. Now she gets ready for the wrestling season in the 106 weight. She is quite an athlete.”
Los Alamos won the team title.
NOTE: Girls State Championship times for Saturday at Rio Rancho HS.