Claremont are once again the San Gabriel Valley’s top boys cross country team for 2019.
The Wolfpack ended their season with a strong, third-place performance at the State Meet, moving up from fourth at CIF Finals in a year when the Southern Section dominated Div. II
These rankings were determined by doing an actual merge of each team’s final Southern Section performance – either CIF Finals, Prelims or League Finals. The top 15 teams by time were merged, five were taken out, and then the top 10 were merged again.
Four of the ten best were new this year (see 2018’s rankings here) with one huge surprise. Wilson followed their Valle Vista League championship with their first ever trip to CIF Finals, where they were fourth, and to the State Meet, where they ended up 12th. They finished 2019 ranked 8th among the seventy-seven schools of the SGV
Walnut (#3), Flintridge Prep (#9) and Damien (#10) were also new to the Top 10 in 2019, after finishing just outside the top group last year. The Mustangs were Hacienda League Champs and advanced to CIF Div. II Finals for the first time since 2013, where they finished 16th.
Flintridge Prep had a huge day to defend the Div V CIF Championship, their eighth in the five division era. Damien, stuck in the big school Baseline League used their at-large entry to finish a solid 11th in Div. III in the first trip to CIF Finals since 2011.
TheÂ ClaremontÂ boys earned the SGV’s only podium place in Saturday’s California State Cross Country Championships at Woodward Park in Fresno, while theÂ CovinaÂ girls had the top girls performance with their fourth place finish in Div IV.
It was a bit of a rough day for our local teams, with only three of the nine, the above two plus theÂ La SernaÂ boys performing ahead of the average for Southern Section teams in their race.
Three SGV athlete’s made the State Meet’s ten person podium.Â Audrey SuarezÂ (Jr, Mayfield) was the only girl, finishing 3rd/17:53 in Div. IV, 9 seconds off of her winning time in 2018. On the boys side, ClaremontÂ junior Jack Keough-LansfordÂ led his team’s strong Div II effort with a 7th/15:14 finish, whileÂ Eduardo De PazÂ (Sr, Baldwin Park) was 3rd/15:31 and the top CIF-SS athlete in Div III. Jack and Eduardo’s times rank them =17th and =48th, respectively, among theÂ SGV All-Time Top 50 Performers on this storied 5000m course.