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Ahead of the pack: Wolves cruise to sweep at Jesuit Classic
With just two weeks until the District 10-5A Cross Country Meet, Plano West is looking to distance itself from all comers.
That looked to be the case Saturday at Norbuck Park for the latest installment of the Dallas Jesuit Classic, where the Wolves commandeered meet victories in both the boys and girls 5,000-meter runs.
"The team performed well overall," said Jerry Gardner, West girls head coach. "Our goal was to work as a team and to work on elevation climbs to help prepare for our district meet. I was proud of how the ladies worked together as a team."
The Wolves (48 points in girls, 54 in boys) did so among a field that included four of the other five schools that will be present on Oct. 25 at Myers Park. Plano East (120) and Allen (70) posted second in the boys and girls runs, respectively. McKinney Boyd added fifth in the girls (122) and seventh in the boys (189).
All were playing catch-up to the Wolves though, who flexed their depth in both races.
The West boys enjoyed another first-place run by Grant Copeland (15:38.70) as one of four Wolves in the top 11. Drew Megura (16:02.40, sixth), Mike Coopman (16:22.00, eighth) and Luis Cuenca (16:24.50, 11th) rounded out that pack. The Lady Wolves proved one better though, placing four in the top 10 -- led by Valerie Bradley's fourth-place run (19:22.50). Joining her was Zoie Wilson in seventh (19:40.50), Ari Surles in eighth (19:42.40) and Savannah Borgsmiller in 10th (19:50.50).
"We have a good team that I believe is coming together at the right time," Gardner said. "It is always a positive to see the athletes perform up to their potential. The team has an opportunity to be strong if they continue to work towards our goals."
The Lady Eagles did what they could to nip at West's heels, procuring third place from Katherine Allen (19:17.50), sixth from Maggie Gaudio (19:35.60) and 12th from Hailey Jensen (19:56.10).
Despite finishing further back in their second-place pursuit, the Panthers still managed third place from Kevin Rojas (15:51.90). His next closest means for support was Phillip Metcalfe in 21st (16:49.60). In the girls draw, the Lady Panthers (238 points, ninth place) were led by Mona Azzo in 20th place (20:21.20) while Jacob Pena did the same for the 11th-place Eagles (331), finishing 31st overall (17:03.20).
The only 10-5A squad not present in Dallas on Saturday was Plano Senior.
The Wildcats were still in action though, competing in Round Rock at the McNeil Invitational, where both the boys (432 points) and girls (412) placed 16th in their respective races.
Mary Casillas led Plano in the girls draw with a 38th-place run (19:51.40), while Kevin McGivern commandeered the boys' side in 56th (17:02.30).
With just one meet left on the docket to tune up for district, the Wolves, Wildcats and Eagles will be all be on hand Saturday at 9 a.m. from Samuell Park for the Mesquite Poteet Invitational.
"We still have a long way to go to reach our team goals," Gardner said, "but it was great to see the efforts rewarded with a good performance."
The Lady Panthers will be in Mesquite as well, while the East boys are slated to compete at Fort Worth's Arcadia Park in a meet hosted by Keller Central.
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