Carson High cross country on course for strong finish in regionals
IF YOU GO
What: NIAA Regional Championships
Where: Shadow Mountain Park/Reed High School
When: Friday starting at 10 a.m.
Race times: 4A boys at 10 a.m., 3A boys at 10:30 a.m. and 1A/2A boys 11 a.m.; 4A girls 12:05 p.m., 3A girls at 12:40 and 1A/2A girls at 1:15 p.m.
Carson High’s cross country team got its first look at the course being used for Friday’s NIAA Regional Cross Country Championships, and coach Pete Sinnott liked it.
“It is a pretty good course for us,” Sinnott said. “It is different than the course used for the Reed Invitational. It is much like what we run at Edmonds where there is a little grass. There are a lot of plusses.”
The start of the races will be at the youth baseball fields at Shadow Mountain, and the finish line will be in the Reed High football stadium.
What is at stake is a berth in next Saturday’s State Championships, also being held on the Shadow Mountain-Reed High course. The top three teams in each division plus the top five finishers on non-advancing teams make the state meet.
Carson’s girls team, led by Rheanna Jackson, Gabriela Fernandez and Blanca Sosa, has an outside shot at finishing in the top three. Sinnott believes the aforementioned trio has a chance to move on as individuals, but he isn’t sure his team has enough depth.
Jackson is currently ranked seventh in the state among Northern Nevada 4A runners and 14th overall in all classes. Fernandez is 56th overall in the state and 24th in Northern Nevada 4A. Sosa is 60th overall and 26th among Northern Nevada 4A runners.
“I don’t know that anybody has improved as much as Rheanna since the start of the season,” Sinnott said. “Reno had a runner (freshman Penelope Smerdon) that was 1-minute 20 seconds ahead of Rheanna earlier this year, and she has cut that down to about 30 seconds. I think track helped her a lot, working with Steve Pradere. She came back this year in great shape, and that is something that hadn’t happened in past years. She came in ready to run this year.”
“Gabriela hasn’t been in top health. She is having flu-like symptoms. She has a chance if she has a good day. Blanca has improved a lot.”
Carson’s boys team is young. Senior Jayson Legott is 79th in the state, sophomore Zach Sever is 80th, junior Ethan Byasse is 89th and junior Hunter Rauh is 97th. Freshman Parker Lehmann and Trinity Medina are also competing.
Based on times, Carson is a longshot at best to qualify as a team or get any individuals in. Sinnott remained upbeat.
“If we have a good day, we can move on,” Sinnott said. “Other teams have not improved as much as we have. We have nine strong runners. We don’t have anybody that isn’t a good runner.
“Parker is getting stronger,” Sinnott said. “Zach has been very consistent. Trinity is getting stronger and getting tougher. Hunter has been a great leader for the team. Hunter is great for two miles. He needs to be able to finish races (stronger).”
3A: Logan leads Dayton
Truckee, Spring Creek and Elko are the team favorites in 3A. Spring Creek has four of the top 20 runners in the state and Truckee has four in the top 40 overall.
Jason Logan is 12th among Northern Nevada runners and 19th overall, and is truly the only Dust Devil runner with an opportunity to reach state as an individual.
Madsen Evans is 43rd overall, Logan Allander is 73rd overall and Tyler Logan is ranked 82nd in state.
1A-2A: Marchegger favored
Sierra Lutheran’s boys team is favored to win, as Jared Marchegger and Teagan Hansen are ranked 1-2 going into the event. Andreas Gilson, Jacob Tack and Zachary Houghton complement the above-named duo. The Falcons have five runners in the top 36 in the state.
Emily McNeely and Taylor Davison are 1-2 on the girls side, but Wells has more depth and should win the team title.