Photos by Sherri Cortez/San Diego Runners
Several Arizona high school teams headed to the cooler San Diego temperatures for the Mt. Carmel/Movin Shoes XC Invitational. The popular meet is held on the Foot Locker National course with a few variations. The course is a little shorter and does not include a second loop up the killer hill.
Chaparral junior Ali Kallner had the best time of the day for an Arizona female runner winning the Small School Girls Junior race with a time of 16:20. Kristin Powell (Jr., Ironwood Ridge) finished 3rd in the same race with a time of 16:29 and Rachel Thomas (Jr., Chaparral) took 6th in 16:51 over the 2.75 mile course.
"I felt great about the win," said Kallner after the race. "California has a really good pool of runners so it was a challenging race and rewarding result. The course is definitely one of my favorites. It has a huge variety of terrain and a killer hill that makes things interesting. It was awesome racing weather, and the cooler temperature definitely attributed to how great I felt running. Overall it was one of the best Xc experiences I have had. My next big race is Twilight in a week and a half, I'm super excited to get out there again!"
Kallner's freshman teammate Emily Crall won the Small School Girls Freshman race with at time of 16:37 with Karena Garcia of Flowing Wells finishing in 5th place in 17:37 and Grace Kallner (Chaparral) in 15th place. Karina Haymore of American Leadership Academy Charter School in Gilbert finished 2nd behind Crall with a time of 17:16.
In the girls sophomore race Kaeli Otto (Ironwood Ridge) ran a 17:46 for 13th place with Saguaro runner Lauren Cole (17:54) in 15th place.
Karina Kelly from Marana Mt. View was the top Arizona runner in the Senior Race for small schools crossing the finish line in 17th place with a 17:28 time.
In the Large Schools section of the race, Briana Junior (Perry) finished 19th in the freshman race with a time of 18:11 while teammate Gabby Ybarra ran a time of 17:33 for 20th place in the junior race.
The Arizona boys had equal success in several races and leading the way over the 2.95 mile course was Ironwood Ridge senior Jordan Hellebuyck who ran a time of 16:04 in the Small School Senior race for 7th place. Brennen Barbuss (Higley) finished in 9th place in 16:08 and Cal Skilsky (Ironwood Ridge) took 10th.
Josh Fleetwood (Marana Mt. View) led the Arizona boys in the junior boys race with a time of 16:07 while Sawyer Sprung (Sabino) finished 6th in 16:10. Ironwood Ridge had two top finishers with David Fernandez taking 7th place over Brandon McKay in 8th. Both boys ran a time of 16:11. Alex Stevens (Saguaro) placed 10th in 16:18.
Tyler Beauchamp (Saguaro) won the Small Schools sophomore race with a time of 16:16 followed by a 5th place finish from Brett Willman (Ironwood Ridge).
In the boys Small Schools Freshman Race Morgan Risch (Flowing Wells) finished 4th in 16:59 and Alex Ramirez (Marana Mt. View) placed 8th in 17:36.
In the Large Schools Sophomore race Cade Burks (Perry) ran a time of 16:29 for a 9th place finish while Luke Mason (Brophy College Prep) took 3rd in the freshman race.
At the end of the day 1,805 boys and 1,347 girls crossed the finish line on Saturday and when all the times were combined Ironwood Ridge ended up in 4th place overall led by Hellebuyck's 25th place finish. Josh Fleetwood finished in 27th place with Brennen Barfuss placing 31st. The Greenway boys were the second Arizona team finishing 22nd out of 91 teams.
The top girls team was Chaparral, landed in 14th place overall out of 77 teams. Ali Kallner's time of 16:20 earned her a 15th place spot followed by Ironwood Ridge's Kristin Powell in 29th place.