Tartan Cross Country Program Impresses at Clovis Invitational
The Tartan cross country team traveled to Fresno this past weekend to compete in the Clovis Invitational and came away with an impressive win against some of the top-ranked teams in the state. The meet is largely regarded as a preview to the California State Championships, and teams from every corner of the state converge at the famed Woodward Park racecourse to gauge their progress on the season.
"Our goal in attending the meet is to simply get comfortable with the course and work on our logistics for the state championships in November," said head coach Patrick Bendzick. "We don't focus on the other teams in the race, but it's always a pleasant surprise when you can accomplish that and get the win too."
The varsity girls team of Joyce Li, Sarah Bendzick, Liesel Blau, Emma Griffin, Catherine Chou, and Ali Botuchis took down the top-ranked team in the state, University High School of San Francisco, by a 10-point margin. They also toppled CIF Southern Section top-ranked Viewpoint of Calabasas by over 100 points. Leading the Tartans was freshman Joyce Li who finished 5th overall. Her time of 19:17 places her third all-time for St. Margaret's on the course behind all-state runners Andi Carnell (18:38) and Liesel Blau (18:00).
"We had a tough league meet on Wednesday that came down to a single point with Santa Ana. I'm incredibly proud of how they laid it all on the line that day, and then bounced back to have their best race of the season just three days later," said Bendzick. "It shows that they are tough, fit, and unafraid of any situation."
The team will return to racing this Friday at the Orange County Championships but will rest several key athletes in preparation for the Mt. SAC Invitational on October 21.
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