The Mancos cross-country team opened up their 2012 season in Monticello, Utah, last Friday competing with 10 other teams.
The meet saw competitors from New Mexico, Colorado and Utah run a 3-mile course around Loyds Lake just outside of Monticello.
The teams included were Piedra Vista (Farmington, N.M.), Colorado schools Montezuma-Cortez and Dolores, and Utah schools Monticello, San Juan, Whitehorse, Monument Valley, Green River, Navajo Mountain and Pinnacle Canyon Academy.
For the Lady Bluejays, Kristin Adams was the lone varsity girl completing the course in 23 minutes, 53 seconds, which was good for eighth-place out of the 33 runners.
The girls champion was Rachel Demby from Montezuma-Cortez High School, who ran the course in 21:52.
Mancos had two junior varsity girls. Kia Baikie finished first in the JV race in 24:43 and Maya Bonde finished in 18th with a time of 29:34.
On the boys side, Justin Burton led the Bluejays in the varsity race with a fifth-place finish out of 39 runners in a time of 18:16. Brandon McKie finished in 25th with a time 21:12.
The varsity boys champion was Harrison Fleming from Piedra Vista with a time of 17:30. In the JV race, Mancos ran five freshmen. Ro Paschal led the team with a time of 19:25, coming in second-place. Asa Kearns was right behind him in fourth-place with a time of 19:42. Nic Archuleta and Vincent Grego were next in 20th and 22nd with times of 22:21 and 22:35, respectively. Zane Goodell finished out the team score with a 30th-place finish in a time of 25:04.
This was the first high school cross-country race for most of our runners today, Mancos coach Brady Archer said. In the races, I just want to see them go out and finish the race, and get a feel for what the length of the race feels like. We have a good group of freshmen boys that I know will do well once they have figured out the high school race. Overall today, we had a good start to the season. It was nice to get our first meet out of the way, so that the runners can see where they are now in terms of being in race shape. We are still looking forward to some runners, who are nursing injuries returning to help us out later in the season.
Demby led the M-CHS Lady Panthers to a third-place team finish with her great race. M-CHS recorded 63 points behind host Monticello (52) and Piedra Vista (29).
Abby Lock came in seventh for the Lady Panthers at 23:52.58. Other M-CHS times on the girls side were Julia Damore, 24th, 26:02.08; Elana Cope, 25th, 26:17.58; and, Kelly Abrams, 30th, 28:22.55.
The highlight of the meet was Rachel Dembys first-place finish in the girls varsity race. A great way to start the season, M-CHS coach Paul Koops said. The girls third-place finish in the team standings was satisfying and promising. Junior Abby Lock ran well, as did freshman Julia Damore.
For the Panthers, Dillon Wells ran strong with a seventh-place time of 18:18.35. Other finishes were Chandler Dee, 21st, 20:19.75; Tayler Wilson, 27th, 21:20.57; and, Bracken Whiteskunk, 34th, 24:51.78.
Dillon Wells grabbed a top ten finish in the boys varsity race. More significantly, his time was a minute and a half faster than his time on the same course a year ago, Koops said. Sophomore Chandler Dee cut nearly two minutes from his time of a year ago, and newcomers Taylor Wilson and Backin Whiteskunk both turned in promising first time performances.
Ben Baker and Aeiden Violette came in 33rd and 35th at 23:39.66 and 25:00.79 for the Dolores Bears in the schools inaugural year of cross-country.
Times for the Lady Bears were Kayla Charles, 14th, 24:31.93; Regan Umberger, 23rd, 25:58.62; and, Haley Lee, 32nd, 29:00.30.
On Friday, Mancos, Dolores and M-CHS will compete in the Southwest XC Challenge in Durango on the campus of Fort Lewis College. Middle school, high school and college runners will be competing starting at 3 p.m.