Cross Country and Tennis Programs Cap Exciting Fall Seasons
The cross country program made their second consecutive CIF-SS Finals appearance on Saturday, Nov. 18 with the boys squad finishing a solid fifth in Division 5 with a score of 180. The Tartans were led by Matt Sotto's and Luke Gitter's season-best performances of 16:20 and 16:26 respectively. The girls squad took third place with a team score of 153 and were led by Julia Matin and Charlotte Jones, both clocking in at 19:02. St. Margaret's became one of only 10 teams out of nearly 600 to advance both boys and girls programs to the CIF State Finals in Fresno on Nov. 26.
The Tartans looked to keep the momentum going at the state finals, with the teams finishing in the middle of the pack for the division. The boys ended up 10th while the girls finished 13th.
“The boys team has been building to this point over the past two years, and it was impressive how they handled the high expectations and pressure. On the other hand, the girls team has defied the odds every step of the way by building an elite team with four new runners. Their combined success is the direct result of the tremendous support they provide each other and the commitment they made to the details of the process,” said head coach Patrick Bendzick.
The Tartans tennis team amassed a 14-5 record and advanced to the CIF-SS Quarterfinals by defeating a talented Long Beach Poly team 86-73. Despite its inspired play, St. Margaret's fell to top-seeded Palos Verdes 15-3 in the quarterfinal match.
In CIF Individuals competition, the duo of seniors Izzy Oedekerk and Elise Talley had a spectacular run. Enduring an eight-hour rain delay, they won their first round matches 6-1 and 6-0 to advance to the round of 32 doubles tournament on Tuesday, November 29.
In the round of 32, the Tartans faced an impressive team from Corona del Mar High School, winning both sets to advance to the quarterfinals the same afternoon. The girls faced a tall order in No. 3 seed Oaks Christian and fell 6-3, 6-3 to end their postseason.
"Our seniors had a great season, leading by example for our younger players. I wish them all the best, and I am grateful for their leadership this year," remarked coach Dana Bozeman.