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Poly XC Comes Up BIG at IVL Cluster Meet #1

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Valley View HS, 9/20/17

It never fails…Poly HS athletes always wear a big green and orange target on their backs while our competition guns for us in a special kind of way. As the oldest school in Riverside, this is expected and our athletes generally shrug it off as “they hate us ’cause they ain’t us!” Today was no different as all 6 of the Inland Valley League schools lined up against each other to do battle over 3 miles. In the end, ALL of our teams showed up to compete and accomplished their goals: Both Boys teams came in a convincing 2nd place and both Girls teams ran away with 1st place. Make no mistake about it…these victories were TEAM victories as other schools had the top finishers in both of the varsity races. Read below for more information and see our results page for individual places and times.

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Girls Team:

Our JV girls pulled off a rare feat today…a perfect score! This means that our girls placed #1 through #5 for a score of 15 points. Malia Benson (10) ran a “varsity” time of 20:28 in her first XC race ever (her toe tag didn’t register so they “gave” her 20:58…but we had a watch on her) and even made a wrong turn while leading the race! Lauren DeFrank (12) came in second with a 21:02 PR and was followed by Tiffany Jones (11), Teresa Rangel (12), and Soleil Russo (9) to round out our #1-5. Erin Ortega (9) and Arezoo Nickroo (11) also posted solid PRs on a day where many girls ran very well! Way to go girls!!!

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Our Varsity girls came into league as the favorite to win their 5th straight title…and they didn’t disappoint in this first of 3 meets! While our top finisher (freshman, Kalista Tibbels with a 19:28) was in 4th place overall, all five of our scorers came in the top 10 and all seven girls were in the top 16…this, in spite of two girls still feeling the effects of the sickness that has swept through our team in the past week. Winning like this, while knowing that we have better days ahead definitely helps boost our team confidence! Kalea Ibarra (12), Alexis McPhail (9), Sarah Helfand (9), and Elena Umana (10) rounded out our top 5 finishers. Overall, our girls were 31 points ahead of the 2nd place team. Nice start ladies!!!

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Boys Team:

Our JV boys team has a few old faces and several new ones. The sickness took its toll on our boys squads as well today but, those who ran really stepped up and rose to the occasion to claim a 2nd place team finish. Ethan McDonald (10) ran a winning time of 17:25 in his bid to move up to the varsity level. He was followed by new runner Nicandro Rosas (9), Alfred Soliz (9), Bryce McManigal (12), and Eric Sanchez (12). In all, TEN of our JV boys posted PRs in this race! Congrats guys!!!

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Our Varsity boys also came in with something to prove. Last year, our boys team was hoping for a 2nd place finish, finished 4th in the final meet of the season (dropping them to 3rd overall). They came back with a vengeance today with a solid 2nd place team finish! While we have our work cut out for us to claim the top seed, we did have a solid 21 point lead over the 3rd place team. Senior Lerenzo Gipson (12) was our top finisher in 3rd overall with a PR time of 15:46! Justin Bartlebaugh finished right behind him with a 16:02. Nick Valencia (11), Michael Utterback (12), and Andrew Carlson (11) with a nice PR, rounded out the top 5 Poly finishers. Parker Moore (12) also turned in a nice PR performance in his first varsity race! Hard work and solid grouping helped these guys to achieve that 2nd place finish today and they will continue to grow and improve as the season continues. Great Job fellas!!!

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