Although it’s a little early to predict how this year’s cross country teams will fare as a group, last Friday at the West Hills high school Wolf Pack invitational two members of the boys squad served notice that they’ll be in the mix for individual honors. Senior Jake Ruzevick and freshman Ben Enowitz won half the boys races in convincing fashion with Enowitz winning 1.6 mile freshman race by 9 seconds in 8:21 and Ruzevick the 2.1 mile senior race by 10 seconds in 10:51. Because this race was so early in the season these were the only two we entered. Over the summer break Ruzevick ran over 75 miles per week and Enowitz up to 40 miles per week. After a week of training the boys squad is shaping up with veterans Brad Munns and Reid McLean, along with senior transfer Drew Lewis, among the front-runners. Munns made the all-League and all-CIF cross country teams last year but missed most of the track season because of an ankle injury sustained in basketball. McLean was last year’s CIF 300 meter hurdles champion and placed 7th at the national Junior Olympic decathlon championship this summer. Lewis is no stranger to cross country having run for Princess Anne high school in Virginia Beach. As the season progresses we’ll get a better idea of who will move up to the varsity level. Except for the 3 seniors above it’s a young squad of around 20 runners, many of them freshman.
The girls team lost 5 solid runners to graduation but there are many new faces and a few returning seniors. Returning from last year’s team are Ashley Walsh, Karolin Ivarsson, Marissa Nagler, Katie Gomrick and Sara Player. Danielle Cabana joins them from track, along half-dozen freshmen from last year’s middle school team. As with the boys it’ll take a couple of weeks to sort out the varsity. Based on previous seasons Walsh, Ivarsson and Nagler should be the front-runners. Cabana has been training for a marathon so she has a good base and should do well in her first season of cross country.