Varsity cross-country teams win inaugural Delta League Championship

By Jeanne Kim, Staff —

The cold weather and gray skies at Willow Hill Reservoir in Folsom did not stop the women’s and men’s varsity cross-country teams from winning league champion titles at the Delta League Championship on Saturday, Nov. 1, with their frosh/soph counterparts both taking second.

Both the women and men defeated rivals St. Francis and Jesuit by fair margins, with the top five Davis runners in both varsity races scoring totals of 20 points, compared to St. Francis’ 43 and Jesuit’s 35.

“The varsity ran incredibly well and I thought there might be a little more competition or a little more pressure from St. Francis and Jesuit from both the boys and the girls side but Davis kids really took care of business,” head coach Bill Greg said. “They did a really, really great job.”

The first runner to come speeding across the muddy finish line in the women’s varsity race was junior Fiona O’Keeffe, who finished her 5-kilometer race in a time of 17:30.

More than a minute after O’Keeffe blazed through the finish, sophomore Sofia Castiglioni crossed the finish line with a time of 18:41 to take second place.

“I really wanted to race strong today because I’ve been having a slow season at the moment. I accomplished my goal of [placing] second, but I still added about 20 or 25 seconds to my time last year, but it’s better than what I have been adding, so it’s getting there. Hopefully we’ll be at the top of our performances at state meet,” Castiglioni said.

The men’s varsity team also raced extremely well, placing the top five Davis High runners before the second Jesuit runner.

“I thought we did pretty good; we beat Jesuit–pretty handily too–and we got second through sixth place, which is enough [for first place],” senior and fifth place overall runner Charlie Harris said.

Looking into the near future, Harris has a good feeling about sections.

“I think we are going to win. We are going to win the section title second year in a row,” Harris said.

Although Blue Devil pride was at one of its highest points during the varsity races, with “cheerleaders” scattered about the course with signs and encouragements, two women’s varsity runners were injured.

“Adria [Lammers] finished the race but she was feeling pretty faint when she got to the finish line…took her a little while to recover so we just have to see how she’s doing later today. Abbey [Fisk]’s hip really was not bothering her [earlier today], but it was really sudden […] it was really painful to bear weight so she made a good decision to step out,” Gregg said.

The weather in Willow Hills was cold and windy and the course was muddy. Most of the runners were shivering and huddled together under blankets before the race and the weather may have negatively affected the performances of the women’s and men’s frosh/soph teams.

“I got a head cold at the top of the hill, and it was not fun; it was very puddly and there was a lot of rain,” sophomore Kyle Tran said.

Although the frosh/soph teams placed second, Gregg believes it will only encourage them to do better at the section meet.

“I think for the Sub Section meet they’re not going to be too concerned about [the loss], but it could be some fuel for the fire for the Section meet; in other words, [Jesuit and St. Francis] got us at leagues so we want to double back and get them at sections,” Gregg said.

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