September 12, 2020
St. Cloud, Florida
The East Ridge High School girls cross country competed in the St. Cloud High School Cross Country Invitational Meet at St. Cloud High School on Saturday morning. The temperature and weather conditions this morning were a nice change from the high temperature, heat, and humidity during last week’s meet. Many of the runners were not satisfied with their performances last week’s meet in Lakeland, and so this past week they worked hard at practice, and sought some redemption at this week’s meet!
Girls from 11 different schools throughout central Florida participated in this morning’s meet at St. Cloud High School. The girls varsity race began at 8:00 AM. The runners made their way across some water-logged athletic fields, rounded a small lake, and ran through some wooded areas on St. Cloud High School’s campus’s diverse terrain. The course included two large loops with a track and football field finish for spectators to enjoy. Mackenzie Hill led her team in the race as the first Knight to reach the finish line. Mackenzie rounded the first mile marker, spotted in ninth place, in a swift time of 6:22. She pushed through the second and third miles, and was able to improve her position. Finishing in a time of 21:06, Mackenzie was just seconds from her career personal best. She placed sixth out of a field of 68 varsity runners. Mackenzie’s finish time this week was nearly a two-minute improvement from her performance last week! Mackenzie’s continued leadership at practice and meets will be important contributing factors to this team’s ability to reach its goals this season. The second Knight through the finish chute was senior Heidy Castillo. Heidy’s finish time was 24:01 and she finished in 27th place. Heidy’s performance on Saturday morning earned her a new career personal best time by seven seconds (her time from the regional meet last season). Heidy’s improvement from last season to this season can be attributed to her commitment to summer conditioning and her continued efforts at practice each day.
The third Knight to finish was sophomore Bre Peine. Bre finished in 33rd place and posted a time of 24:27. Her performance at St. Cloud was nearly a two-minute improvement from her race last week in Lakeland! The fourth finisher for East Ridge was senior Olivia Peine who finished in 48th place and in a time of 26:48. Olivia’s performance at St. Cloud was an improvement by one minute from last week’s race. The fifth runner and final team scorer for the Knights was junior Keira Votava. Keira placed 49th and posted a time of 26:55, as she followed her teammate into the finish area. Keira was also able to improve her performance from last week by more than a minute! Sophomore Alanis Melgar and senior Caitlyn Cavender finished in the team’s sixth and seventh positions in the girls varsity race. Alanis improved her time from last week by nearly a minute with a finish time of 27:25. Caitlyn also improved her time from last week, finishing in 30:22.
As a team, the East Ridge girls placed fifth out of seven schools that fielded complete teams. George Jenkins High School, out of Polk County, claimed first place at the meet by placing five of their runners in the top fifteen. The overall winner for the girls varsity race was junior Alanie Rivera from Harmony High School. She finished the race in a swift time of 19:38.
The Knights also had three runners participate in the girls junior varsity race on Saturday morning at St. Cloud High School. Freshman Addison Dodd finished in 32:20, sophomore Brenna Oliveri finished in 34:51, and sophomore Alexandra Dimitros finished in 35:06.
The girls cross country team will travel to the Villages on Saturday September 19th to participate in the Buffalo Cross Country Invitational on the grounds of the Villages Polo Club.
For full results from the St. Cloud Cross Country Invitational visit the following links:
Girls Varsity Results: https://www.j7sports.net/20200912GVresults.pdf.
Girls Junior Varsity Results: https://www.j7sports.net/20200912GJVresults.pdf.