Palomares Final: Claremont Doubles Up, Bonita Moves On, Glendora Does Not

SGV #1 Claremont turned in two easy wins at Saturday’s Palomares League Final, run over a fairly fast and flat 3-mile course at Legg Lake in South El Monte. Both Wolfpack teams scored 25 points to win comfortably over CIF-ranked Ayala. Bonita, which already held boys and girls at-large qualification spots through the CIF rankings, was third in the boys race and fifth in the girls. Glendora, SGV #4 for girls and #9 for the boys, needed a third place to advance to CIF, but both teams were a disappointing sixth.

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In the boys race, Claremont ran together at the front, perhaps conceding the individual win to Andrew Martinez of Ayala in 14:47. Senior Ryan Cowgill was next at 14:55, and the Wolfpack’s next four scorers - Aaron Reyes (Sr), Adam Trafecanty (Jr), Jacob Moran (Sr) & Jack Keough-Lansford (So) finished 4-7 and within 9 seconds, while putting their whole team of 7 in the first 11.

Soph Daniel Echeveste (13th/15:28)led Bonita to a very nice third place finish. It’s hard to finish well when you’re #1 is that far back, but the Bearcats next three finished with the next five spots & 15 seconds, which helped them overcome their #5 being further back than usual.

Glendora also had a tight 1-5 grouping but they were too far back to factor in the scoring. Their best was a very strong performance  from their usual #4 Nicholas Vega at 15:50, but he was only 21st (and behind the first four for Bonita) nixing the Tartans chance to advance.

The Claremont girls also ran grouped up near the front. Frosh Maddie Coles went forward to challenge Ayala’s Mikaela Ramirez for the win, coming up a bit short to finish 2nd in 17:11. The Wolfpack finished their scoring with a 4-5-6-8 finish by Sydney Hwang (17:20), Azalea Segura Mora (17:34), Kalinda Reynolds (17:35) & Julia Marriott (17:54).

Junior Lorelei Claxton was up front for Bonita, as she has been all year, and ran a strong 18:04 for 10th place. The rest of the Bearcats ran well, but the strength of the league pushed them back to 5th. They will advance to CIF through their CIF Div. 3 ranking.

Glendora came into the meet ranked ahead of Bonita but is unranked in CIF Div. 1, so they needed a top 3 finish to advance. Their strong performance last week at Riverside made that a real possibility, but the Tartans did not quite reach that level here and finished sixth.  Tops for the team was senior Avery Kuehfuss who closed out her XC career with near life-time best performance of 19:21.

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