Sunnyside boys and girls squads dead last at CBBN 4A league opener

YAKIMA – Sunnyside’s youth and inexperience pop-ped to the forefront at the opening Columbia Basin Big Nine League cross-country meet of the season Thursday afternoon.

“We finished about where we thought we were going to,” said Sunnyside Coach George Paulus. “With a team as young as we are, we’re just trying to learn how to do this.”

The 5,000-meter race was hosted by the West Valley Rams.

Scoring-wise, the Sunnyside boys’ squad brought up the rear in the seven-school field with a point total of 195. Eisenhower, which had four harriers place in the top 10, posted a meet-low score of 34 points.

Sunnyside was the lone school unable to field a complete five-runner squad for the girls’ varsity race.

The two girls who did compete for Sunnyside in the varsity competition were juniors Jeniya Guillen and Angela Montes.

Guillen fared reasonably well, placing 12th from the 43-girl field. She crossed the finish line in a time of 22:27.

Montes hit the finish line in 26:48, in 36th place.

Paulus said he ran the two girls who have experience in the varsity race, but one of his JV girls, freshman Andrea Diaz, ran the course in 25:23 to earn fifth place honors in that competition.

“She’s really been shining through,” Paulus said of the JV harrier.

The winning varsity girls’ time was 20:52, set by Davis High School senior Mercedes Chaves. The Pirate edged Ike freshman Erica Simison by 12 seconds for top honors.

Eisenhower’s girls tallied a meet-best score of 23 points, followed by Wenatchee and West Valley’s girls tied for second with 71 points. Davis (100), Eastmont (106), Moses Lake (156) and Sunnyside (incomplete) brought up the rear in the girls team scoring.

The Wenatchee duo of Cole Christman and Austen Lane, both seniors, were the top finishers in Thursday’s boys’ varsity race. Christman clocked the winning time of 16:27, with the runner-up Lane across the finish line in 16:36.

Wenatchee, with 51 points, finished second to Ike in the boys team scoring, followed by West Valley (89), Davis (98), Eastmont (103), Moses Lake (176) and Sunnyside (195).

Leading Sunnyside around the 5,000-meter course was Grizzly sophomore Griffey Sarmiento. He posted the 31st fastest time from the 49-runner varsity field (18:55).

The four other runners whose times were used in the Sunnyside team scoring were freshman Arturo Palacios, 39th place in 20:10; sophomore Joe Rodriguez III, 41st place in 20:36; senior Drew Gallardo, 43rd place in 20:42; and junior Anthony Castelleja, 45th place in 21:09.

“This is a learning experience for these kids,” said Paulus. “They have to learn how to do this sport.”


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