Royal claims crown

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week Michael Cybulski, the defending state 3,200-meter champion, ran 14:53 on the 2.91-mile course, the 10th-best Mt. SAC time in area history. Royal’s first four runners all placed in the top 20. It was a stellar performance by the nation’s third-ranked team, but hardly the only one Saturday. West Covina’s Diego Mercado won the team sweepstakes in 14:24, breaking the course record by eight seconds. Nine of the 21 fastest girls’ times in course history were run this week; four of the top 20 boys’ times also were achieved. Saugus’ Shannon Murakami finished third in the girls’ Div. I/II individual sweepstakes with a time of 17:08. That time makes her the second-fastest runner in area history at Mt. SAC, which also hosts the Southern Section prelims and finals. Royal, the defending Div. I state champ that also set a record at the Woodbridge Invitational this year, was without team captain Jason Pedersen because of injury. “Jason’s been the force behind this team,” said Royal coach Ryan Luce. “We came here knowing we’d do well, but we wanted the record for him.” WALNUT – The Royal High of Simi Valley boys’ cross country team didn’t let the absence of its team captain keep it from shattering the course record at the prestigious Mt. San Antonio College Invitational. They used it as motivation. The Highlanders won the boys’ Div. I/II team sweepstakes race in 76 minutes, 22 seconds. That’s 37 seconds faster than the record set by Canyon High of Canyon Country in 2001. center_img Murakami, who started the season as the second-ranked Div. I runner statewide, had struggled recently. She finished second to teammate Katie Dunn in a Foothill League meet last week, a loss Murakami said inspired her entering this meet. Murakami finished behind freshman phenom Jordan Hasay from Mission Prep of San Luis Obispo. Hasay, who owns several national age-group records, won the race in 16:48, bettering the freshman course record by 18 seconds. Fellow competitors hounded Hasay for autographs after the race. Highland of Palmdale’s Caitlin Fitzgerald ran 17:44 to finish fifth in the girls’ Div. I/II team sweepstakes race. Reno’s Marie Lawrence ran the second-best time in Mt. SAC history, 16:29, to win that race. Crescenta Valley of La Crescenta’s Nathan Sellers finished fifth in the Div. I/II team sweepstakes in 15:00. Camarillo’s Ted Price, the two-time defending Ventura County champion, overcame a groin injury to finish 10th in the Div. I/II individual sweepstakes. Highland’s Josh Housinger won his team’s Div. I varsity race in 15:19. Canyon, ranked No. 2 by the Daily News, won a Div. I varsity girls’ race in dominating fashion despite missing one of its top runners. All five Cowboy scorers finished in the top 10 for a team total of 29. Kalyn English, one of the top age-group triathletes in the country, was competing in an event in Maui, Hawaii. The Marmonte League had strong showings in several races. No. 1 Thousand Oaks won its Div. I varsity girls’ race despite the absence of Lynne Fletcher, its top runner. Simi Valley’s Anna Sperry won her team’s Div. II race with a time of 17:33. Westlake’s Cory Primm, who won the Div. II junior boys’ race earlier this year at Woodbridge, won Saturday with a time of 15:32. Erik Boal contributed Sean Martin, (818) 713-3607 [email protected] 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more