Week 9 Preview: Last Invite, First League Finals.

This weekend will see the final Invite of the 2018 cross country season, and the first of the League Finals. Saturday two of our strongest leagues, the Prep and Palomares will contest their championships, while on Friday, Arcadia will host the Apache Invitational.

Friday, October 25

Apache Invitational – Arcadia Park

Live Results

Eighty-Five schools will run in this final invite of the year, contested on the super-fast, flat course at Arcadia park. Twenty-six SGV schools will take part, but it looks like several of the top-ranked schools will be competing with B-teams.

In the elite Sweepstakes races, Bishop Amat and Rosemead senior Melanie Mach with be in the Small Schools Girls division, and hosts Arcadia in the Large. The Arcadia boys will also run in the Large School Sweepstakes division, while Amat and Pioneer will be in the Small.

Saturday, October 26

Prep League Final – Pierce College, Woodland Hills

The Prep League matches up traditional SGV small school powers Flintridge Prep and Mayfield. The Prep girls are five-time defending Div. V State Champs, but they’ve been locked in a close battle for league supremacy with the now Div. IV Cubs. They’ll close the season on the super-hilly course in the San Fernando Valley.

Mayfield had the edge in the league’s one cluster meet, which also happened to be the only meet that the Cubs dominant #1 Audrey Suarez has run this year. With Audrey, Mayfield should be league champs, and they might be able to hold off FP without her. Pasadena Poly was third in the cluster, and they’ll need to run well to hold onto the third CIF qualifying spot. Westridge was fifth in the cluster, and it looks like a top three finish will be out of reach.

Suarez is the clear individual favorite, but if she falters, Sophie Phinney (Jr, Poly) and FP seniors Haley Allen and Sasha Codiga will battle for the championship.

Flintridge Prep edged out Chadwick in the first cluster meet, with Poly a non-qualifying third in this four-team boys league. FP are the clear favorites after their performance at Mt.SAC, and senior Carson Hasbrouck is likely to win the individual title. Poly is coming off a rough performance at Mt.SAC and will need a big step-up to reach the second spot.

Palomares League Finals – Legg Lake Park, South El Monte

Claremont, top ranked in the SGV, and the CIF-SS and top 5 in the State, are the clear leaders in this league. But their quality should not obscure just how good the rest of this league is, with five of the girls teams and three of the boys teams ranked in the CIF-SS and four of the girls.

In the girls race on this fast, flat 3-mile course, Claremont should hold off Ayala, with senior Sydney Hwang and frosh Maddie Coles battling for the individual title with Amber Rios of Colony and Mikaela Ramirez of Ayala.

The real battle will come for the third auto-CIF spot. SGV #6 Bonita and Alta Loma are already assured at-large bid through the CIF rankings. But SGV #4 Glendora was narrowly sixth in the Palomares Preview meet, and have yet to be CIF ranked so they will need to jump all the way to third to advance. The good news for the Tartans is their outstanding performance at Riverside last week now makes them the favorites to finish third over those teams and Colony.

In the Boys race, Claremont should win, and could come close to 15 if Ayala falters. SGV #6 Bonita has earned an at-large spot in the rankings, and they may need it. The Bearcats were third in the Preview meet, but SGV #9 Glendora was only six points back in fifth. Off of Saturday’s performance, Bonita is likeliest to finish third again, but it’s within the Tartans’ power to step up and grab the final CIF spot.

Claremont senior Vicente Huerta is the defending champ, and he’ll battle Andrew Martinez of Ayala and senior teammates Ryan Cowgill, Jack Moran and Aaron Reyes for the top spot.

SGV Boys XC Rankings: Week 8

All of the top teams except for clear #1 Claremont raced this past weekend on our area’s two championship courses – Riverside and Mt.SAC. These competitions in big meets give us a good sense of where the teams stand heading into next week’s League Finals Meets.

Arroyo, Bonita, Damien and Pioneer were especially impressive this past weekend at Mt.SAC, with the Titans making the biggest jump from 15 to 11. Bishop Amat showed well at Riverside, and they return to rankings this week. California also moves up on the strength of their excellent performance there.

La Serna didn’t perform up their usual level at Mt.SAC and they fall to fifth. Whittier and Flintridge Prep were both missing runners, and they both drop in the rankings.

SGV Boys XC Rankings – through 10/20

  1. Claremont (1st in the Previous Ranking)
  2. California (4th)
  3. Arcadia (3rd)
  4. Arroyo (4th)
  5. La Serna (5th)
  6. Bonita (8th)
  7. South Pasadena (7th)
  8. Rowland (6th)
  9. Glendora (9th)
  10. Damien (12th)
  11. Pioneer (15th)
  12. South Hills (14th)
  13. Whittier (10th)
  14. Bishop Amat (Not Ranked)
  15. Walnut (13th)

Left Rankings: Flintridge Prep (11th)

SGV Girls XC Rankings: Week 8

Almost all of the top SGV teams raced this past Saturday at either Riverside or Mt.SAC, and so we got to see how everyone stacked up against strong competition.

The exceptions were Claremont and Mayfield who ran B-Teams at Mt.SAC and Riverside. The Wolfpack continue to be the class of the SGV, while the Cubs have only had on appearance from their #1 runner – they’ll need her in the post-season.

The biggest move in the rankings came from Glendora and California, both of whom ran really well in the Div. 1 race at Riverside. The Condors are almost certain CIF qualifiers, while the Tartans (unranked in Div. 1) will need a Top 3 finish to advance out of the brutally tough Palomares League. South Pasadena, who moved from 11th to 7th, were led by two frosh at Mt.SAC and may have the biggest upside on the list.

Going the other way are La Canada, who fall to 13th, due to an injury to a key runner, and Arcadia who move from 5th to 9th after a rough day at Mt.SAC.

SGV Girls Rankings – Through 10/20

  1. Claremont (1st in the Last Rankings)
  2. Walnut (2nd)
  3. Bishop Amat (3rd)
  4. Glendora (9th)
  5. California (10th)
  6. Mayfield (6th)
  7. South Pasadena (11th)
  8. Bonita (7th)
  9. Arcadia (5th)
  10. Arroyo (12th)
  11. Alhambra (15th)
  12. La Cañada (4th)
  13. Flintridge Prep (13th)
  14. Flintridge Sacred Heart (Not Ranked)
  15. La Serna (10th)

Leaving the Rankings: Santa Fe (14th)

CIF Rankings – Week 8 – 10/22: We’re up to 25!

This was the second week of the CIF Southern Section Rankings expanding to 16, and the San Gabriel Valley increased its share in the rankings from 22 teams to 25.

This is a big achievement for our area. We make up just over 10% of the Southern Section’s population, yet we have nearly 16% of the ranking spots.

The SGV also has four boys teams and 5 girls teams ranked in the California State Top 10 last week, led by Claremont who rank at the top in both the boys and girls Div. 2.  The SGV has 5% of the state’s population, but our schools have earned 9% of the spots in the rankings.

Five schools moved into the rankings this week – Flintridge Sacred Heart (D4) & Vivian Webb (D5) on the girls side, and South Hills (D3), Pioneer (D4) and Maranatha (D5) on the boys. Falling from the rankings were the Covina girls (D4) and, surprisingly given their solid performance at Mt.SAC, Damien (D3).

Twenty of the teams were ranked for the second consecutive week in the expanded rankings, and so earned an at-large berth in CIF Prelims should they fail to advance from their leagues. Teams earn an at-large spot by ranking in the top 16 twice in the final four weeks – this was week two of the final four

Of those twenty, only the Bonita boys and girls are at all likely to need an at-large spot. Damien may need one as well, so they will be hurt by falling from the rankings. None of the newcomers to the rankings are likely to need an at-large spot, nor is Covina.

Four of the SGV Girls Top Ten were unranked: #5 Arcadia, #8 Glendora, #9 California & #10 La Serna. Only #6 Rowland and #9 Glendora are unranked among the boys, but except for Glendora, none of these are likely to need a ranking to advance.

You can view the entire rankings here

San Gabriel Valley Girls

*=Clinched At-Large CIF berth.

Div 1 – #6 – #9 California Walnut* (6th last week)

Div 2 – #1 – #1 CA Claremont* (Same)

Div. 3 – #8 Bonita* (9th); #13 Rosemead* (13th)

Div. 4 – #5 – #6 CA Bishop Amat* (Same); #7 Mayfield* (8th); #10 Flintridge Sacred Heart (Not Ranked) #11 – #7 CA La Cañada* (6th)

Div. 5 – #2 – #5 CA Flintridge Prep* (Same); #7 Poly* (Same); #12 Webb (Not Ranked)

Left Rankings: Covina – #16 Div. 4


San Gabriel Valley Boys

Div 1 – #7 – #10 California  La Serna* (#6); #6 Arcadia* (7th); #14 California* (=12th)

Div. 2 – #1 – #1 CA Claremont* (1st); 9th Arroyo* (9th)

Div. 3 – #10 Bonita* (10th); 12th Whittier* (13th); 16th South Hills* (Not Ranked)

Div. 4 – #4 – #4 CA South Pasadena* (3rd); #10 Pioneer (Not Ranked) #12 Bishop Amat* (10th); #15 La Canada* (13th)

Div. 5 – #3 – #3 CA Flintridge Prep* (=2nd); #11 Maranatha (Not Ranked)

Left Rankings – Damien – 15th Div. 3


Mt SAC Saturday: Two Screamers – Hibbard 15:08 and Walnut 93:08 – Lead the SGV

Most of the SGV’s schools are in Divisions 3 & 4, so only eight local schools competed on Saturday, but those schools are some of our best, and the performances showed it.

Running in the Boys Individual Sweeps: Noah Hibbard (Sr, Arroyo) was 6th/15:08 and the Knights were equally good finishing 3rd/79:33. Noah is now =31st best All-Time SGV at Mt. SAC. (The A-T best is 14:24, #50 is 15:16)

In the Boys Team Sweeps: Arcadia turned a strong effort, finishing 9th/79:43. La Serna was unable to hold their usual tight 1-5 grouping, and finished 11th/80:16.  Marco Perez  – 25th/15:37 was best for the Lancers and Jacob Hsu 29th/15:38 led the Apaches.

In the Girls Team Sweeps: Walnut was 4th/93:08 and Arcadia 11th/100:13. Chloe Arriaga again led the way for the Mustangs with a 3rd/17:21 finish. Walnut just missed putting four under 19:00, but their 4-5 gap grew a little bigger, which could hurt them in the post-season. Joyce Wu was solid up front for the Apaches at 10th/18:02, but the rest of the team had a big of rough day.

SGV Top 10’s and Team Rankings After the Jump Continue reading Mt SAC Saturday: Two Screamers — Hibbard 15:08 and Walnut 93:08 — Lead the SGV

Riverside: Cal Boys Return to Form, Glendora & Alhambra Girls Step Up

With the CIF-SS Prelims and Finals at the Riverside Cross Country course again this year, a number of SGV teams bypassed the traditional test at Mt.SAC to run here, including seven SGV ranked teams. The course here is mostly flat, but with many turns, it runs considerably slower than other flat 3-mile layouts.

In Division 1 – they divided the field here into three groups by size and quality – the Glendora girls turned in a strong performance, finishing 13th/98:05 behind 11 ranked teams. The Tartans were led by soph Emma Barrosa (57th/19:20) and helped by a tight 19 second gap from 1-4. California was just behind in 15th/98:34, led by Stephanie Reynoso at  48th/19:13.

In the boys Div. 1 California shook off several recent rough performances to finish 4th/79:09. Angel Salinas led the Condors with an excellent 11th/15:28.  Glendora was a solid 10th/81:36.

In Division 2, the Bishop Amat girls continued to improve, finishing 3rd/97:02 behind two ranked CIF Div. 2 teams.  Alhambra, in a big team step-up was 10th/101:35. Olivia Paez led the Lancers and all SGV girls with an 11th/18:35 finish, with the Moors Serena Duenas right behind at 12th/18:41. Amat received a boost in their post-season hopes from a big performance by frosh Janelle Santos (35th/19:45)

The heat was rising by the time Div. 3 went off, but that did not prevent Flintridge Sacred Heart turning in their best performance of the year, finishing 2nd/104:08. They edged out SGV #4 La Canada who were 3rd/103:13. The Spartans were strong again 1-3, with Ellaney Matarese 4th/18:59 the SGV’s best in the race, but missing a key runner, they had a nearly two-minute gap back to 4&5. The Tologs were also strong up front, with junior Lauren Nettels (8th/19:58)leading a 8-10 finish for the team, but their smaller, 80 second gap back to #5 was the difference.

In the Boys Div. 3 race, South Hills shook off the heat to finish 5th/84:28, with Los Altos just behind in 6th/85:36. SGV #10 Whittier, running only one of their usual first five, were 9th/88:49. The Hightower brothers of South Hills had probably the best day of their careers, finishing 1-2, Devin at 15:50 and Dillon at 16:02.

Mt. SAC Friday: Oswaldo & South Pas with Big Days

Oswaldo Cervantes (Sr, Nogales) and Haley Allen (Jr, Flintridge Prep) had the top SGV individual performances on Friday, while the Bonita boys and the South Pasadena girls, choosing to run in the divisional race,  turned in the best team performances.

Bonita Soph Daniel Echeveste on his way to his first sub-16 at Mt.SAC

Cervantes was third in the Div. 3 sweeps race in 15:21 – a 36 second gap on the SGV’s next best on the day. Soph Daniel Echeveste (17th/15:58) led Bonita to a fourth-place finish in that race, while senior Kai Dettmann (1st/15:57) led South Pasadena to an easy win in their divisional race. Pioneer, in their first big race of the year, showed they belong with a 5th place finish in the Div. 4/5 Sweeps, led by by junior Daniel Estrada, 18th/16:28. Flintridge Prep, missing two of their expected top five, were 11th.

Allen was 11th in the Girls Div.4/5 Sweeps and the Rebels, running a bit our of order, were 6th. South Pas had three girls under 20 minutes as they were easy winners of the Div. 4 race, led by frosh Sydney Morrow (1st/19:19) and Mai Koyama (7th/19:50). Bonita was 7th in the girls Div. 3 Sweeps, with junior Lorelei Claxton (5th/19:04) up front for the team.

SGV Top 10 Individuals and Team Rankings after the jump Continue reading Mt. SAC Friday: Oswaldo & South Pas with Big Days

Week 8 Preview: Championship Season is in View

This weekend, the focus moves to big invites on the traditional cross country championship courses. All of the SGV’s Top Ten teams, with the exception of #1 Claremont and girls #6 Mayfield will be competing.

Riverside Invitational – Riverside

Live Results

On Saturday, ten SGV schools will compete in Riverside Invitational, on the course that will be the site of the CIF-SS prelims and finals in November. SGV ranked Bishop Amat, California, Glendora, La Canada and Whittier will be looking to make their mark.

71st Annual Mt.SAC Invitational – Mt. San Antonio College – Walnut

Live Results

The big Mt. SAC Invitational, will take place on Friday and Saturday. The hilly 2.93 mile Mt. SAC course is the Southern Section’s traditional championship course, but the reconstruction of the track has caused the CIF meets to move to Riverside and limited the field here.

Nevertheless, it will be a strong meet bringing teams from throughout the state and the western US, with Divisions 3, 4 & 5 racing on Friday and Divisions 1&2 on Saturday.

Forty-one SGV teams will compete on this big course.  Arcadia, Arroyo, La Serna, and Walnut will be in the big Sweeps races on Saturday. Bonita, Covina, Flintridge Prep, Nogales, Pasadena Poly, and Pioneer will be in the Div. 3,4,5 Sweeps races on Friday. Ranked Rowland and South Pasadena will be competing in the divisional races.

Week 8 League Meets – Previews & Results

Most of the leagues wrapped up their league/cluster meet schedule last week. All of the others, except for the Montview League, will finish this week.

We’ll add results and brief coverage as it becomes available, and more extended coverage as photos and race notes are made available.

Tuesday, October 15th

Mission League – Crescenta Valley Park, La Crescenta

In the first meet both Flintridge Sacred Heart and their brother school St. Francis finished in the top half, with Tolog Lauren Nettles finishing an impressive fifth. The Knights will need another good performance to stay in the CIF qualifying spots.

Complete Results

Boys ResultsSt. Francis had a bit of a rough day, falling from 4th in the first meet to 6th. Sean Wilcox was best for the Knights in 18:16.

Girls ResultsFlintridge Sacred Heart moved from 2nd in meet 1 to win here, helped by Harvard Westlake resting two runners. Tolog junior Lauren Nettles was 2nd/19:58

Baseline League – Bonelli Park, San Dimas

Damien was 4th and St. Lucy’s 5th in the first Baseline Meet. The Spartans’ CIF chances increased when they received a CIF Ranking Monday, but a third place is in reach for both teams.

Baseline League #2 Results

  • Boys Results: The Spartans jumped up to second by putting three men in the top 10, led by by frosh Eric Martinez who was 4th/16:42. They were also helped by league leaders Chino Hills resting several runners.
  • Girls Results: The Regents were 5th again, and were a bit further away from 3rd from the first meet. Frosh Sarah Gann stepped up for the team’s top finish at 7th/20:14.

Horizon League #5 – Legg Lake Park, South El Monte

These girls race every week, and form has held each time, with the SGV’s Ramona Convent 2nd, Alverno 3rd, and San Gabriel Mission 6th.

Complete Results

  • Girls ResultsRamona Convent was a solid second again, let by a 4th/21:17 finish from frosh Emily SilvaAlverno backed up a bit but still held third, their best was Kate Bolin – 9th/22:32

Wednesday, October 17th

Almont League #2 – Legg Lake Park, South El Monte

Schurr was the easy boys winners in the first meet, and Alhambra won the girls meet by an even bigger margin. Montebello and Bell Gardens were 2/3 on both sides. Alhambra has the best chance to move into the top half in the boys race, and San Gabriel will look to move up in the girls.

Complete Results

  • Boys ResultsMontebello were a distant 2nd to Schurr in the first meet, but the Oilers stepped up big to edge their cross-town rivals 48-49. Bell Gardens were 3rd again. Spartan soph Armando Morales was the big winner again in 16:25, and Jonathan Maya (Sr, Montebello) in a big step up performance, was 2nd/16:53, improving three spots and 23 seconds from Meet 1.
  • Girls ResultsAlhambra were the easy team winners again, but it was Schurr that made the big move, improving by 32 points and three spots to finish second. Spartan senior Marai Atanacio registered a clear 18:40 win over form Almont #1 Serena Duenas (Sr, Alhambra) who was 2nd/18:53. A lot of Schurr’s help came from frosh Berlyn Moreno who moved up to the Varsity for the first time to finish 9th/20:40 – a 1:04 improvement from meet 1. Bell Gardens was 3rd, just ahead of Montebello.

CIF Rankings: Week 7 – We Go to 16

This week, the CIF Southern Section rankings expanded to 16 for each of the five, enrollment based divisions.

Up to this point, the rankings have been mostly for fun, in that they didn’t have any direct impact on CIF post-season qualifying. But beginning with this week and for the next three weeks, any team that does not qualify by finishing in the top half of their league can advance if they are ranked twice in the last four weeks.

Seven teams moved into the rankings this week. The Arroyo boys returned to the Div. 2 Top 10, where they were ranked earlier this year. New to the extended rankings are the Rosemead and Covina girls, and the boys from California, WhittierDamien La Cañada. The Condors and Cardinals were ranked earlier this year.

With these updates La Canada joins Claremont, Bonita, Bishop Amat & Flintridge Prep in having both their boys and girls teams ranked.

The teams that were most helped by the rankings were Damien and the boys and girls of Bonita. The Spartans were 4th in the strong Baseline league and may need the help The Bearcat boys are narrowly third and the girls narrowly 4th in the brutal Palomares League, where five of the six girls teams and three of the boys teams are ranked. Conversely, SGV ranked Glendora were unranked, so they will need a not-impossible move up to 3rd at finals to advance.

Four of the SGV Girls Top Ten were unranked: #5 Arcadia, #8 Glendora, #9 California & #10 La Serna. Only #6 Rowland and #9 Glendora are unranked among the boys, but except for Glendora, all of these teams will not need the rankings to advance.

You can view the entire rankings here: Week 7 – 10/15 CIF-SS Rankings

San Gabriel Valley Girls

Div 1 – #6 Walnut (7th last week)

Div 2 – #1 Claremont (Same)

Div. 3 – #9 Bonita (Same); #13 Rosemead (Not ranked)

Div. 4 – #5  Bishop Amat (Same); #6 La Cañada (Same); #8 Mayfield (Same); #16 Covina (Not ranked)

Div. 5 – #2 Flintridge Prep (Same); #7 Poly (Same)


San Gabriel Valley Boys

Div 1 – #6 La Serna (Same); #7 Arcadia (9th); #12= California (Not ranked)

Div. 2 – #1 Claremont (3rd); 9th Arroyo (Not ranked)

Div. 3 – #10 Bonita (9th); 13th Whittier (Not ranked); 15th Damien (Not Ranked)

Div. 4 – #3 South Pasadena (4th); #10 Bishop Amat (Same); #13 La Canada (Not ranked)

Div. 5 – #2= Flintridge Prep (Same)