Wolverines fare well in season opener
More than 50 high schools and middle schools from Northern California and Nevada — including North Tahoe, Truckee and Incline — will compete in the historic North Tahoe Kiwanis Invitational this Friday.
For the fourth year in a row, the Truckee cross-country team made its season debut under the lights at the Nature’s Bakery Twilight Invitational in Sparks.
With nearly 30 runners between the boys and girls, the Wolverines boast one of the largest cross-country teams in school history.
The two-time defending state champion Truckee girls proved they will remain a force to contend with despite losing their top two runners from the past several years to graduation.
In a field of 12 teams in the varsity race, the girls placed seventh overall and second only to Spring Creek among Division I-A teams. DI teams they bested included McQueen, Galena, Carson and Spanish Springs.
Junior Carrie Bradley had the best showing of the evening with her 10th-place finish among 96 runners in the varsity girls race. She covered the hilly, 4-kilometer course in a time of 16:34. Reno junior Kyra Hunsberger took the win in 15:24.
Bradley was followed by teammates Julia Veliquette in 31st (17:22), Olivia Yale in 50th (17:54), Amanda Rae in 51st (17:56) and Lily Robertson in 59th (18:20), rounding out the five point-scorers for the team.
Sophomore Elizabeth Morgan was the sole Truckee entrant in the junior varsity race of 138 runners. She finished 11th with a time of 18:49.
Truckee coach Rob McClendon was encouraged by the girls performance.
“After losing two strong seniors last year, we’re looking for our new identity as back-to-back state champions,” he said. “We will be in the mix this season, but we will have to narrow our gap down between our first and fifth runners to be able to beat a strong Spring Creek team.”
Truckee’s varsity boys placed third among D-IA teams. Point scorers for Truckee included Hudson Verbeck in 34th (14:32), Ian Smith in 35th (14:33), Ryan Murphy in 64th (15:04), Jenner Tresan in 104th (16:29) and David Delicandro in 110th (17:06).
The largest field of the evening was the JV boys race, with 218 runners. Truckee’s squad, with a record eight freshmen, placed fifth among 18 teams and second among D-IA teams, losing only to Spring Creek.
Truckee beat out DI Reno, Carson, Reed, Damonte Ranch, Spanish Springs, North Valleys Hug and Wooster, as well as South Tahoe and Elko of the D-IA.
Leading the charge was sophomore Tyler Ferrera in 11th place (15:36), followed by freshmen point scorers Jordan Guldman in 38th (16:16), Calin Laine in 39th (16:18), KC Larkins in 65th (16:52) and Ids Propstra in 79th (17:04).
“The younger JV boys ran a great team race, and they’re responding well to high-mileage training,” McClendon said. “The varsity boys also looked strong. We will possibly add some freshmen on the varsity squad toward the end of the season to hopefully place well in our division.
“Overall, it was a great start to the season. Almost all returning athletes ran a personal best on that course.”
Two of the biggest improvers on the course over last year were Ian Smith on the boys side with a 1:39 improvement and Amanda Rae on the girls side with a 1:17 improvement.
Complete results are available at http://www.athletic.net.