Runners still finding footing

CROSS COUNTRY Both boys and girls have struggled in their meets.

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Runners still finding footing

Senior Janet Wong and junior Garrett Miller practice to improve their times.

Senior Janet Wong and junior Garrett Miller practice to improve their times.

INGRID CHAN

Senior Janet Wong and junior Garrett Miller practice to improve their times.

INGRID CHAN

INGRID CHAN

Senior Janet Wong and junior Garrett Miller practice to improve their times.

Christina Liu, Staff Writer

At the second official league meet, the Diamond Bar varsity cross country placed last in the boys division while the girls placed fifth out of the six teams competing at Bonelli Park.  

“We are doing everything we can, and I’m really proud of our team,” head coach Malinalli Cooke said. “They have been steadily improving with 90 percent of the runners improving over every single race.”

The boys ran behind Glendora by two and a half minutes, falling in last place. Girls varsity fell behind Glendora by four minutes, but managed to pull ahead of South Hills taking fifth place. Cooke said that an advantage was the fact that DB put seven girls into the race while South Hill only put five.

“I think what we really need to do is get the boys in the lower half a little bit faster and our grouping a little bit better,” Cooke said.

Cooke said that decreasing the time between the team’s top runner and last runner will  help the team get significantly closer to South Hills’ time. The top runner, sophomore George Rosales, placed 23 out of the 41 runners with a time of 17:01, with the team falling in the bottom half of the pack run.

“I believe that the team is doing much better this year, and we need to improve on cohesively working together as a team to get better,” said captain Fred Yang via Facebook.

The girls on the other hand had a one minute and fifteen seconds gap between the top runner and fifth runner. The top runner, sophomore Natalie Santiago placed 22 out of 40 runners with a time of 20:27. Cooke sees room for improvement in the next season since the girls cross country team is mainly made up of underclassmen.

“Ideally this is their baseline and we will get them stronger next year as we keep progressing,” Cooke said.

Although the team struggled at the league meet, girls cross country did well at the Wayne Walker Invitational held at Craig Park, with the varsity girl’s team placing ninth out of the 32 teams present.  

Cooke has high hopes for next season with the four of the top runners on the girls team and three of the top runners on the boys teams being underclassmen. The next league meet is going to be held at Bell Gardens on October 14.