On Saturday, the Panthers sent 25 athletes to compete at the super popular, highly competitive Ed Sias Invitational. Hosted by Campolindo High School, the Ed Sias Invitational routinely features some of the top runners and top programs from around Northern California. One day before the meet, coach Denis Mohun previewed the meet.
“All the races at Ed Sias will be ultra-competitive. Many of the teams are from either the Tri-Valley area or not even in the North Coast Section. They come from all over to race the tough 2 mile course. It’ll be hot and it’ll be fast. Hopefully our runners will be ready.”
On Saturday, it looked as though the Panthers were ready. The highlight race turned out to be the freshmen boys race, where coach Riccardi’s “Goon Squad” finished 4th overall… trailing only Division 1 schools (whose enrollment exceeds 2500) Dougherty Valley, Berkeley and Bellarmine. Leading the way was impressive freshman Mateo Malko-Allen. After a slow start, Mateo moved all the way into the top 10, finally finishing 7th overall in 11:53. Teammate Adrian Licea, also praised by coach Riccardi for his talent and toughness, wasn’t far behind Mateo… finishing 13th in 12:30. Nico Laub-Sabater was 3rd for the Panthers, crossing the line in 13:08. Vale Johnson Vigeant Lukas Herz, Jurgis Vass, Nate Catalano, and Connor Deakin rounded out the scoring for the Panthers.
The frosh-soph girls team, comprised of 6 freshmen and 1 sophomore, also had a nice debut on Saturday. Overall, the team finished 10th behind perennial powers like Dublin, Maria Carillo, and Campolindo. Freshman Summer Graham followed her solid time trial run on Monday with an outstanding run at Ed Sias. Battling the heat and an unfamiliar course, Summer ran 15:10 on the challenging 2 mile course to place 1st for the Panther team and 42nd overall. Freshman teammate Sofia Jackson followed in 15:28, while sophomore Mallory Boell ran almost a minute faster than she did a year ago while finishing in 15:39. After that, a quartet of freshmen – Leiah Goode, Julia Runyan, Georgia Rogers and Taryn Fettig – battled the hills and the temperature to complete the team scoring.
For the varsity teams, juniors Riley Hartney and Jordan Cornet were the days fastest. Riley ran 11:32 for the Panthers, nearly a minute faster than a year ago… while Jordan led the girls team with her 12th place finish, running 13:56. Teammate Nan Wemmer ran 14:27 to grab a top 20 finish, which coach Mohun said was “quite impressive.” Co-Captain Olivia Lawson ran a solid 14:53 as the team’s third runner, with juniors Ashley Robarts and Simone Rogers finishing 4th and 5th for the Panthers respectively. As a team, the girls finished 7th overall.
Pictures form all races can be found on the Panthers Shutterfly page.
Next up for the Panthers is the annual Farmer Invitational at Hayward High School on September 21st. All races will be 3 mile races run on the NCS championship course.