PVIS Dominates State Meet - Again
• Peninsula middle school runners win multiple championships at State meet.
Palos Verdes Intermediate School girls extended their major titles winning streak, completing their quest for a “five-peat” as the Sea Kings won two team crowns and just missed a third at California State Middle School Cross Country Championships on Nov. 15.
Chadwick’s Becket Wren won the 8th grade boys title on a day when 15 Palos Verdes Peninsula runners registered Top-10 finishes in six races on the flat and dusty 2-mile layout at the Riverside Cross Country Course.
PVIS finished in the top three in all five of the team divisions in which it entered full squads, posting the top overall team time in four of those races.
The big question before the 8th grade girls’ race was whether PVIS could extend its four-year streak of winning the 8th grade team title at either State or the Mt. SAC Invitational, the world’s largest cross country meet?
The Sea Kings responded with a resounding victory, Jadyn Lee leading a parade of five PVIS runners in the Top 15 runners for 47 points and the “five-peat.”
PVIS’ overall time of 1 hour, 8.42 seconds was more than two minutes ahead of the combined time for San Gorgonio, which finished second with 75 points. El Rancho was third at 112 with Chadwick sixth at 149.
Lee covered the course in 13 minutes, 20.2 seconds and was followed by a tight pack of Sea Kings teammates. Landon Corman was 10th (13:37.6), Emilia Oginski 11th (13:44.7), Amber Chen 14th (13:57.0) and Zofia Lok 15th (14:02.5). Priscilla Rose Men-Martin 38th (15:00.6), Riko Negishi 46th (15:19.1) and McKenna Butcher 48th (15:19.1) rounded out the PVIS lineup.
Chadwick’s Zoe Stephens (13:23.0) and Claire Buchi (13:29.4) were seventh and eighth.
Wren broke away from a group of four runners just before the mile mark and then stretched his lead all the way to the finish line for an 11:16.4 clocking. PVIS’ Matthew Farnsworth was fourth in 11:42.3. Chadwick was seventh in the team standings.
The Sea King 7th grade boys, plagued by illness and injuries in recent weeks, narrowly added the State team title to their Mt. SAC victory earlier this season and a State 6th grade team crown last year with a textbook example of team running.
PVIS and San Gorgonio both finished with 40 points with the Sea Kings winning on the tie-breaker by having the first sixth runner across the finish line. Cross country team scores are based on the finishes of the first five runners, with the No. 6 and 7 runners bumping down runners from other teams in the team scoring.
Sea King Alex Naehu secured 3rd place with a late charge, finishing in 12:04.7. Peter Chang and Michael Mackiewicz also joined Naehu in the Top 10. Chang’s aggressive running brought him across the line in 12:14.8 for sixth place while Mackiewicz clutch effort in the final 300 meters was good for ninth in 12:25.9.
PVIS then wrapped up the title with a tight pack of four runners. Oliver Macfarlanc was 15th (12:36.3), Tobias Rodriguez 16th (12:37.0), Aaron Murillo 17th (12:42.0) and Max Cibort 18th (12:44.8), all of them finishing ahead of San Gorgonio’s fifth runner.
The Sea Kings 7th graders combined time of 1:01.58 was more than 30 seconds faster than that of the winning 8th grade boys team.
The PVIS and San Gorgonio rivalry produced an equally close and dramatic finish in the next race, the 7th grade girls. Again the two schools finished deadlocked, 47-47, this time San Gorgonio winning on the tie-breaker although the Sea Kings posted the faster overall time.
PVIS standout Natalie Wang’s blazing second mile landed her in third place in 13:28.1. Jordan Hernandez sixth (13:46.1) and Riley Padian ninth (14:08.5) joined Wang in the Top 10. Arianna Sheldon 20th (14:41.9) and Tara Timm 28th (15:00.5) rounded out the Sea Kings top five.
PVIS’ Madison Navarra capped an outstanding rookie season with runner-up finish in the 6th grade girls race but San Gorgonio’s depth was too much for a banged up Sea Kings squad. San Gorgonio held on for a 49-57 victory against PVIS despite a late charge by the Sea Kings.
Behind Navarra, Addison Lundstrom (14:24.4), Trinity McKenny (14:28.6), Kate Sherry (14:42.5) and Eto Uchiyama, running for the first time in more than two weeks because of a knee injury, (15:31.0) went 10th, 11th, 13th and 26th for PVIS.
Sea King Robert Michael matched Navarra’s second place finish in the 6th grade boys race (12:51.8). Mason Condello was 10th (13:35.6) as PVIS took third in the team standings.
— email reports