St. Margaret's cross country teams qualified for the CIF-SS Finals by winning their respective heats on Friday at the CIF-SS Preliminary round held at Mt. San Antonio College Friday afternoon. The No.2-ranked Tartans controlled the majority of both races while resting some of their top athletes in anticipation of a tight battle for the upcoming CIF-SS Championship on Saturday, Nov. 19.
"We spent the last four months developing our freshman runners so they can make an impact at this meet. For many, it's their first championship race, and for some, it's their first varsity race," said head coach Patrick Bendzick. "The poise they showed was extraordinary."
The Tartans held out Evan Causee and Jared Botuchis on the boys side, and Cathy Chou and Ali Botuchis on the girls side. All are significant contributors to the typical varsity roster lineup.
"Racing back-to-back weeks at Mt. SAC can take its toll. It's a demanding racecourse, so having the ability to rest some athletes is a key strategy we have used for many years. It's a luxury many schools our size do not have, and I admire the commitment the team has to ensuring we retain that advantage," said Bendzick. "It takes a great deal of sacrifice on many levels, and the leadership of our veteran runners makes it all possible."
The CIF Finals will take place next Saturday at Mt. SAC and will feature two of the top runners in the section. Freshman Joyce Li and Junior Everett Capelle won their races at the Mt. SAC Invitational and should be poised to lead both teams into title contention.
An independent preschool through grade 12 college-preparatory day school in Orange County, California
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