Truckee cross-country | Wolverines competitive in Mt. SAC Invite | SierraSun.com

Truckee cross-country | Wolverines competitive in Mt. SAC Invite

Staff report

The Truckee cross-country squads participated in the 67th Annual Mt. SAC Invitational in Southern California last Friday. The meet bills itself as the world's largest cross-country invitational, with 25,000 runners in 115 races over a two-day period.  

Mt. SAC's legendary 2.93-mile course is famous for its switchbacks, and its steep ascents and corresponding descents of Reservoir and Poop-Out hills.

While Truckee athletes are no stranger to hill training, the 90-plus-degree heat on Friday afternoon was challenging even for the more acclimated Southern California teams. 

The boys squad raced the Division 4 varsity heat consisting of 208 runners from 31 teams. The boys placed 14th as a team, with senior Noah Oberriter returning from an injury, leading the way with his 33rd-place finish in 17:46.

Sophomore Hudson Verbeck finished in 43rd (18:00), freshman Tyler Ferrera 68th (18:48), sophomore Chris Miller 93rd (19:08) and senior Patrick MacAuley 175th (22:21). 

"We were missing a few runners on the boys side, but overall we placed well as a team. Hudson and Tyler ran great races," said Truckee coach Rob McClendon. "Currently we our ranked fourth in our division, and only the top three teams move on (from regionals), so it will take our best performance to get into state, which I know they have in them."

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The Truckee girls varsity squad qualified for the Division 4 championship bracket "sweepstakes" race, a smaller but competitive contest among 118 runners from 16 teams.

Despite losing Syra Fillat to an injury early in the race, the team managed to finish third in points and second in total and average time. JSerra (San Juan Capistrano) won and Piedmont came in second. 

Senior Skyler Flora finished second (18:19) behind Malibu's Caroline Pietrzyk (17:26). Gabrielle Rinne finished fifth (19:04), Carrie Bradley 28th (20:14), Claire Lang-Ree 49th (20:56), Olivia Yale 58th (21:12) and Julia Veliquette 87th (22:06). 

Out of the 21 girls races on Friday, Flora was sixth and Rinne 25th overall out of the nearly 2,500 runners. 

"We just missed second place," McClendon said. "While having a runner go down with an injury at the start of the race put us in hole initially, the girls stepped it up and ran hard. They are currently ranked number one in Nevada, but Spring Creek is close behind. 

"We will have to continue running as a team and pack up."

Regionals

The Northern Division I-A regional championships are Friday at Reno’s Rancho San Rafael Regional Park. The girls are scheduled to race at 10:45 a.m. and the boys at 1:25 p.m.