Taylor stays undefeated in girls race
Monache High School boys cross country team picked up their second victory of the week with a win at the Ridge Creek Classic Thursday in Dinuba.
Ian Queenan ran wire-to-wire to win the second race of the day against Avenal with a two-mile time of 10 minutes, 8.43 seconds. Adrian Martinez (10:19) closed a huge gap at the mile down to 11 seconds to earn second. Avenal put the pressure on with strong finishing kicks for third and fourth to edge Isaac Ceballos to a 10:59 for fifth. Cristian Ceja had another great performance placing seventh between Avenal's third and fourth runners with a time of 11:06. Isiah Mendez was ninth with an 11:19 and Monte Moore was 10th with an 11:22.
“It was a total team effort against a very tough Avenal team,” MHS head coach Seth Ishida said. “The speed of the first mile in a two-mile race is much faster than the three mile so it was a different feeling for us and especially our two freshman Monte Moore and Salvador Martinez. The wind picked up in their faces on the way back and it was a real gut-check. We had an incorrect mile mark and the guys were a little demoralized by their times. It was a tougher course than it looked. When you look at the beautiful clubhouse and the rolling hills and British open rough, it looks so pleasant and then you get on those slight inclines with some wind and it turns into a challenge. It is a very nice place and we appreciate the chance to compete against 15 schools.”
Ishida added that seventh man Arthur Castillo is steadily improving after an injury and ran an 11:43 for 12th place.
The boys earned a 24-32 victory over Avenal that was much closer than the score shows. Monache ran at 10:15 a.m. and the final dual of the day was at 4:15 p.m. and the team’s hope that Martinez’s 29-second gap would help them get the win. It did since the Queenan and Martinez were first and second overall, respectively, while Central Valley Christian’s Josiah Leever was third with 10:35.
The girls race was led by Aislin Taylor from start to finish with a final time of 11:46 for two miles. “I was especially proud of Eiline Molina at 15:08, Riley Beeman at 15:59 and freshman Nicole Torres at 16:30,” Ishida said. “These girls really competed with Avenal's girls leading most of the race. They did not let the fact that they only had four girls bother them. The first mile was hanging on for survival and the second mile was running neck and neck with Avenal's top 5. We are really missing Janae Espinosa being out with a quad injury. She should return next week.”
Selma ran against CVC, Garces vs. Reedley, Washington Union vs Dinuba, Kingsburg vs Immanuel, Exeter vs Coalinga, Hanford West vs Tulare Union in the girls and Hanford West vs. Fresno Christian in the boys to end the meet.