Lady Lions use Cross Country split squads
The Lady Lions cross-country team split squads last week, taking their varsity squad to Corpus Christi Saturday at the Texas A&M Corpus Christi pre-regional Islander Splash. The Varsity squad ran in the Varsity Large School division and placed 11th out of 42 teams entered. Meanwhile, the JV team competed at the Seguin Matador Invitational Thursday.
In the Varsity competition, Junior Adriana Rodriguez was Lockhart’s first finisher. Rodriguez used a fast start to stay ahead of the 260-plus entered at race time, then slowly worked her way the rest of the race into top 25 medal contention. Using a strong early kick vs the elite competition, Rodriguez ended up 5th overall with a time of 21 minutes and 17 seconds.
Sophomore Reina Del Castillo and freshman Addison Harrod gave the Lady Lions a strong 2-3 punch in team points as Del Castillo finished 47th/23:16, and Harrod finished 53rd/23:21. Del Castillo fought off a last mile wave of runners that included Harrod and numerous others looking to finish in the Top 50.
Two newcomers to the program that continue to impress came next as senior Melanie Rodriguez Gonzales (103rd/24:23) and junior Beth Key (138th/25:20) finished as the 4th and 5th runners in team standings for the Lady Lions. Senior Ashely Ramirez (162nd/26:05) ran a personal-best for 5k and finished as Lockhart’s 6th. Freshman Natalie Rodriguez (171st/26:20) ended as the 7th pusher for Lockhart, just a second ahead of senior Emma Forester (172nd/26:21). Seniors Hannah Wheeler (188th/27:14) and Ryleigh Lindsey (208th/28:21) rounded out the squad for the Lady Lions. rounded out the squad for the Lady Lions.
“This was our toughest test this year,” said Lockhart Girls’ Head Coach Reuben Ortiz. “We are a young team this year when it comes to experience, so I’m glad they got to experience a big race like this first-hand. It’s one thing to tell them what to expect in races like this but for them to go out there and experience going against the best schools in 6A/5A is huge. We had many positives out there which helped us jump up in the team standings and accomplish some individual goals. We did also make some mistakes out there, but with inexperience comes a learning curve and this is the main reason we are out here so we can continue to grow to the next level. These ladies are fighting to get better to make their team better but also themselves. We don’t know who is gonna finish where teamwise each week so every meet matters.”
In the Junior Varsity competition, there were two divisions. The 2-mile run and the 3.1 mile-run. The Lady Lions split their team into the two divisions at Seguin. In the 2-mile race, freshman Melanie Garcia ran her first race of the season and received her first medal of the season. Garcis finished 8th overall with a time of 18:36. Freshman Zoie Ledesma (19:58) also medaled, finishing 10th overall with sophomore newcomer Janae Torres (20:49) finishing 11th.
Junior Hadley Moorhead (14th/24:31) and freshman Alahni Herrera (16th/28:42) rounded out the team for Lockhart in the two-mile division. In the 3.1-mile division, Freshman Katherine Silva Garcia led the pride and finished 68th with a time of 33:15. Next was junior Jayla Goodwin (78th), who completed her first 5k of the year with a time of 36:12. Sophomore Clarissa Martinez-Olvera (83rd/39:00) and freshman Dayana Delgado (85th/40:27) rounded out the squad for the 3.1-mile/5k Division.
“This was a tough race for our young team,” Ortiz said. “I’m glad we got it in before the storms rolled in, but it was even better to see the energy at the finish from our ladies.”
The Lady Lions will continue their season traveling to nearby Gonzales for their annual Apache Invite this coming Saturday.