By Willa Moffatt,
Wednesday morning was no late start for the Davis High cross country team who piled into buses at 7:15 am to head to the first Delta League meet at Granite Regional Park in Sacramento. All divisions raced well, according to assistant coach Tim Groth, despite some unusual circumstances.
While the men and women in frosh/soph ran their 2.18 mile course like any other race, the two varsity teams held back the pace and remained at a threshold tempo. Treating the league meet like a workout rather than a race allowed varsity to prepare for the prestigious Stanford Invitational at the Stanford Golf Course this weekend.
“Going into a race where I am running threshold throws me off a little […] The other varsity girls and I tried to pack run for our workout and we were successful,” senior Abbey Fisk said. Despite this, the varsity women still placed second.
Fisk reported that she and her teammates “are ready to give it all we got [at Stanford]. I would like to PR and hopefully beat our rivals Great Oak.” Groth believes that as a team the women’s varsity can win the seeded race.
On the men’s side, sophomore Kobe Standefer also feels prepared for Stanford.
“As a young inexperienced team it will be important to go out smart. Doing so we need to run with a mentality that allows us to run as fast as we can. Our main goal as a team would be to edge out other Division 1 competitors in our section such as McClatchy and Woodcreek. That would show our improvement and give us confidence going into sections[later this season],” Standefer said.
The men’s varsity ended the league meet in third.
Though it is unclear how the varsity men as a whole will place, Groth thinks that senior Michael Vernau– who, despite also running threshold, won the 5k race Wednesday and led the second place finisher by over a minute–can win the seeded men’s race this weekend.
The frosh/soph women were particularly impressive Wednesday morning, with seven runner in the top 10. The team was led by freshman Lilian Byrne (14:08.8), freshman Shelby Anderson (14:12.0), Kylie Seward (14:17.7) and sophomore Hannah Lybert (14:17.9), respectively. Scoring an impressively low 16 points, the team took first.
“Frosh/Soph showed some great stuff. The girls won and I think the guys could’ve placed better but we let some of them run varsity to try and feel out the 5K course,” Groth said. The men’s frosh/soph finished third.
One of those runners, freshman Zeno Castiglioni (17:50.9) “[stepped] up and did a really great job being out number four guy for the day,” Groth said.
Juniors Jamie Moddelmog (17:25.6) and James Brunette (17:31.1) also ” raced really well to make up for the usual varsity guys,” according to Groth. They came in as the second and third runners for Davis.
Though this is only the first league meet, Groth is confident that DHS will be able to win all four divisions at league championships at the end of October.