Progress was the main highlight on Tuesday when the Douglas High cross country team hosted its annual All Class Races: Round II.
Even on a blustery afternoon, nearly all of the team’s veterans showed marked improvement from last year’s event, held on the same 2.5-mile course at Lampe Park.
The meet was held nearly four weeks after being postponed due to smoke from the Rim fire. A small turnout of teams showed up as a result, however, that didn’t slow the enthusiasm of Douglas coaches Jay Frey and Marc Walling.
Among the highlights of a meet that enabled all runners to compete within their own classes — freshman, sophomore, junior and senior — Douglas logged the six fastest overall times in the girls competition.
Lindsey Adams blazed to a 14:54 that was fastest among the girls and good enough to place seventh overall in a race that included boys and girls.
“Lindsey ran a blistering time,” Frey said. “And the best part of it was when I asked her how she felt afterward, and she said she had fun. When they’re running strong and they’re having fun, that’s a tough combination to beat.”
Moriah Munyan was close behind in 15:36 to place second among the junior girls (13th overall) while Rebecca Corbett’s 16:34 was third among the junior girls and sixth overall among all girls. Corbett dropped her Lampe Park time from last year by 1 minute, 55 seconds.
The Tigers’ Maria Munoz won the senior girls race in a time of 16:25 (1:35 faster than last year), while Madison Cote and Lizzy Byrne ran 1-2 in the sophomore girls race with respective times of 16:27 and 16:33. Cote, Byrne and Corbett were the fourth and fifth fastest girls overall.
Gabby Munoz, third in the senior girls race, and Cristina Munoz, second in the freshman girls race, ran respective times of 17:06 and 17:10 that ranked ninth and 10th overall among all girls.
On the boys side, at least a dozen Tigers lowered their times from last year. Among the more dramatic improvements were delivered by Austin Croxall, who ran 13:48 (faster by 2:54) and Weston Stulac, who ran 14:21 (2:41 faster than last year for Sierra Lutheran).
Stulac edged Ryan Azcarate of Spanish Springs by two-tenths of a second to win the sophomore race. In the junior race, Croxall surged into second-place near the mile mark and held on to the position the rest of the way.
“Austin has come a long way,” Walling said of Croxall. “Compared to last year, he’s dropping his times by 1-1/2 to 2 minutes at every race.”
Douglas packed five runners into the top 12 in the senior race. Lane Smith led the way with a 14:13 effort, good for seventh-place, only a few steps ahead of teammates Jeff Williams (14:15), Cole Peck and Brandon Pankey (14:16). Williams ran 41 seconds faster than last year. Parker Dixon also ran 14:22, an improvement of 1:30, and Mac McCready ran 15:09, an improvement of 1:09.
And in the junior race, Riis Peterson made a big jump with his 18:51 effort, an improvement of 1:46.
Frey and Walling also expressed their thanks to volunteers who turned out to help run the meet.
“We want to thank all the parents and teachers for their support and to everyone who just showed up to watch the kids run,” Walling said.