The Douglas High School cross country team opened its season in solid fashion Saturday night in Sparks as the girls team won the 12-team large school meet and the boys team finished sixth out of 16 at the Nevada Twilight Invitational at Shadow Mountain Sports Complex in Sparks.
“It was great for these kids to actually get out and race in some clean air,” Douglas coach Jay Frey said. “(coach) Marc (Walling) and I know the girls team would be pretty good, but there were a few girls that surprised us.”
Douglas junior Lindsey Adams took second in the girls race, completing the 4K course in 15 minutes, 35 seconds.
“Lindsey ran a really strong race from gun to line, and she’s ready to improve even more, Frey said. “She’s running with a lot of confidence and having fun with it.”
Madison Cote finished 18th (17:12), Lizzy Byrne finished 20th (17:21), Maria Munoz was 22nd, Rebecca Corbett was 29th (17:40) and Cristina Munoz was 47th. Geneses Diaz rounded out the varsity lineup for the Tigers, completing the course in 22:15.
“The big breakout races we had were from Madison Cote and Lizzy Byrne,” Frey said. “They both played freshman volleyball last year. Marc and I knew they could be good runners, but I’m not sure they actually realized it until this race. For their first HS race, they really did well. Maria Munoz and Becca Corbett also ran a really great races for the girls team, they put in some hard work this summer and it shows.”
On the boys side, Cole Peck finished 37th in 14:40, Kaleb Morris was 40th at 14:47, Austin Croxall finished 41st at 14:47, Lane Smith was 43rd at 14:50 and Parker Dixon was 53rd at 15:10. Jeff Williams finished in 15:16, Josh Cassity finished in 15:18.
“The boys finished 6th overall, but packed up really well (30 seconds between No. 1-5 in the varsity race),” Frey said. “Between the varsity and JV races, we had 10 guys within 38 seconds of each other, and 13 boys within a minute.
“What we’re looking for at this point is for these boys to step up and move the team forward in the race. If this race is any indicator of the season to come, there’s definitely going to be some very close competition this season for the boys with teams in the north, but obviously within the team as well. The top 5 or 6 teams are going to be fighting for 3 spots once regionals come around, but I’m confident our boys will be ready by then.
“They’re still getting used to each other and we’re going to work on some different race strategies throughout that will bring them up in races. Cole Peck ran a really great race from start to finish and confidently led our boys team. Austin Croxall was coming on strong towards the end of last season, but he really had a big breakout race on varsity Saturday night. He’s gotten stronger and really looked great. Kaleb Morris ran well, and has shown he’s got a lot of room to grow also. This was his first cross country race but performed well in a tight field of runners.
“We had a couple JV guys that ran really well, Weston Stulac ran the 6th best team time and Nolan Greth was 7th best time of the day.”
Inthe junior varsity race, Douglas’ Weston Stulac finished third (14:54), Nolan Greth was fifth at 15:08, Conner Lyman was 11th and Lars Ponsness was 12th.
In the girls JV race, Kate Hill was 36th for Douglas.
Aside from the solid showing, the Tigers weren’t event at full strength yet. Varsity runners Brandon Pankey, Olivia Abbott and Gabby Munoz were all out rehabbing injuries.