Originally, the Alpine High School cross country team was scheduled to run in Marfa on Oct. 7, but the meet was canceled because of COVID-related issues in Marfa. This did not deter Coach Cory Cason from getting on the phone, and finding another race.
Said Cason, “It's reassuring to know that locally we are supporting each other, and taking care of our student runners first in terms of safety.”
Then Cason got on the network, searching for another meet. As fate would have it, she found that the Lubbock Invitational had one more opening for a girls team and few of the more experienced boy athletes.
Fall days in West Texas are hit or miss, and on this day the temperature was incredibly hot for a Lubbock in October. This translated to slower times for all the teams, and especially slow for the races in the afternoon session.
“This was definitely the most difficult race of the season so far, but it was a good chance to run the same course where our regional event will compete,” said Cason.
On the boys side, D'Angelo Gonzales placed seventh overall at this meet, showing his ability to challenge and push himself in difficult race conditions, and demonstrating why he is a former state qualifier. Marco Martinez also ran a strong race, placing 31st.
In the girls division, Vanessa Rice, Sydnee Jimenez, and Tannin Ritchie placed in the top 10 in their individual session. When the Alpine High School girls were combined with the 3A sessions, Vanessa Rice was Alpine's top runner, placing 32nd.
The Alpine cross country team will run in Pecos on Saturday, Oct. 17, then in Presidio for the District Championship Meet on Wednesday, Oct 28.
Runners advancing to Region and State Championship meets will run as qualified on Nov. 9 and Nov. 23, respectively.