Sprinting into Sections


XC Subsections have caused many complications to the Ripon Cross Country teams. It was set to rain on the FrogTown course in Angels Camp on November 5 as our athletes were running, as well as having a high of 61℉. The teams were part of the small school divisions, meaning that they ran in the afternoon, following the large school divisions. Varsity girls experienced a different set back as there was fear of not having a complete team. 

Three girls on the varsity team were not able to run the race. Two seniors were taking an SAT at the same time and one sophomore has had health complications that ended her season. Going into the race, there were only four girls ready to compete. Five are needed to score as a team, but seven is a full varsity team. Junior Lucy Wagner stepped up to the challenge of running her first three mile race of the season, coming off an injury from preseason. There would still only be five girls, meaning there would not be a tiebreaker for the team. At the last minute, head coach Señora McPherson made the decision to move sophomore Kyla Agbayani from the freshman team to varsity. 

The rain and the cold weather caused a change in the traditional course. CIF, the governing body for high school sports, was forced to have athletes run the “rain course” due to dangers on the hills. Rain made the dirt hills incredibly muddy, meaning runners would surely slip if they ran up them. The rain course took out the large dirt hills, but was new to each of the teams because the last time it was used was before the seniors were in high school. It was two loops of the last mile and a half of the traditional course. The course was fast as it kept runners on the ground and was mostly on flat, packed dirt and cement. 

Despite the challenges, all teams will be moving on to the Section Championships on Saturday. Both varsity teams took fourth place in D4, as well as JV boys placing fourth in D3,4,&5. The sophomore boys placed second along with the frosh/soph girls for the D4 races. Ripon had thirteen medalists, meaning they placed in the top 20 individuals in their race. For boys, senior captain Julio Pelaez in 11th place and junior Devin Fitzpatrick in 14th in the varsity race and freshman Moses Gomez in 7th as well as junior Luke Bair in 19th for the JV race. Sophomore boys had James Wilkins in 2nd, Jonathan Salinas in 6th and Vincent Martini in 13th. Senior captain Annie Wild placed 3rd and junior Jenna Skavdahl took 13th in the varsity girls race. Frosh/soph girls had four medalists who were all sophomores. Emilie Benavides took 12th, Izabella Rodriguez in 16th, Emma Grussing in 19th, and Mollie Walker in 20th. 

Congratulations to our XC teams on their amazing performance at Subsections. We wish you good luck in your race at Folsom highschool for the Section Championships!