Cross Country Team is hit hard by lack of runners due to PSAT and PACT

Staff Writer
Girls Varsity placed 10th out of 20 teams and Boys Varsity placed 16th out of 19 teams at the Orange County Invitational. The unfamiliar course coupled with a lack of many of the stronger runners due to the PSAT and PACT caused a negative impact on the team’s overall scores. Due to the lack of runners, especially for Boys Varsity, many JV runners were moved up to take the spots of absent runners. The cross country team raced on a completely new course at Oak Canyon Park in Silverado this past week instead of the usual Irvine Park.
The JV Boys Junior Varsity team placed 19th out of 19 teams and the Girls Junior Varsity team was unable to place due to a lack of runners. The boys sophomore team finished 17th out of 17 teams and the girls sophomore placed 11th out of 11 teams. Girls freshmen placed 13th out of 14 teams whereas the boys freshmen team finished with a placement of 11th out of 18 teams.
Although many of the girls JV runners were not present, three athletes were able to compete. One of the girls captains, Madeline Boschen (Sr.) ran the race with a time of 24:35. Delara Abbasi (Sr.) completed the race with a time of 27:15, and Nicole Ramsy (Sr.) ended the race with a time of 27.00.
Many top varsity runners were unable to run due to the timing of the PSAT. “I was sad about missing a chance to compete but knew the people who got moved up would step up,” varsity runner Ryan Duffy (So.) said.
A runner who was supposed to be moved up to the boys varsity race yet was moved back at last minute was Nathan Gali (Sr.) Gali used to be a Co-Captain but due to constant injury and sickness he stopped running as much as he had used to.”It was unexpected, but I’m glad that the runners were able to come together to put up a strong varsity race,” said Gali, when asked about the sudden change.
Two other top varsity runners also could not run due to injury. “I’m excited to start running again and show the other schools how hard we’ve been working,” Co-Captain Amir Guity (Sr.). said. Guity has been out for 2 weeks due to a foot injury. The other injured runner was Ryan Liang (Sr.) who was afflicted with knee pain.
One of the top varsity girls runners Avery Klauke (So.) finished 14th out of 100 competitors with a time of 19:18. “This year the race was on a new course and… it was much more competitive but overall it was a really interesting experience,” Klauke said.
Collette Lowengrub (Fr.) finished in the top 5 once again, only 6 seconds behind first place with a time of 18:49. “I didn’t [set a] PR (Personal Record) because of all the hills but I wasn’t that disappointed because I know you can’t compare a face that’s all hills to race that is flat,” Lowengrub said when asked about the different race course.
One of the few original varsity runners who did run was Captain Christian Go (Sr.). Go had previously talked about relying on his fellow runners to set up a good pace and to help each other out during the race for the best possible performance. “[The lack of my teammates]…forced me to be more aggressive in the beginning and not having them to pace was a bit more mentally straining,” said Go.
Another runner who was moved up to the varsity level was Chris Lohmeyer (Jr.) who concluded his race with a time of 17:47. “The course wasn’t as bad as I thought but I’m still not satisfied with my time,” said Lohmeyer.