The student news site of El Camino College

El Camino College The Union

The student news site of El Camino College

El Camino College The Union

The student news site of El Camino College

El Camino College The Union

Women’s cross country team runs away with 2nd title at Golden West Invite

They don’t have this mystic aura about them; however, these women have been fundamentally firm – doing what’s needed to be competitive in their first three cross country invite.

So with the next week off from competing, the team will hone the methods that have become a constant in each race.

There’s no premiere runner in this troupe to gawk over, just five women who, by cross country standards, race as if they were conjoined, while maintaining the pace with the lead pack or within a measurable distance.

It is a strategy that has subsequently led to two titles; the Ventura Invite and last weekend’s Golden West Invite.

“A lot of teams think that we won’t make it to state because we don’t have a lead runner,” said freshman Lori Cardenas from San Pedro High. “We want to prove to those teams that we can do it without a number one runner because we have such a tight front five.”

Evelyn Lopez said it’s virtually the same team from a season ago.

“We might not be finishing first, second or third in races, but we’re doing what we did last year: running close,” Lopez said. “Our confidence is growing more and more. We’re concentrating on beating the teams that were ahead of us at Cuesta College.”

Lopez and team members sized up conference rival Mt. SAC for the first time this season and finished 14 points ahead, 45-59. Host Golden West placed a distance third with 153.

Dinora Moran was the first to cross for EC this time, taking fifth place overall on the 5,000 meter, runner-friendly course with a time of 19:46.

The small hills at Central Park lead into the next, not disrupting any momentum, Lopez pointed out.

Valarie Tucker finished sixth at 19:57, besting her time from last year by nearly three minutes; Lopez ran more than one minute faster, crossing 10th (20:01); Cora Webber took 15th at 20:20 and Cardenas finished 17th (20:40).

“It’s always nice to get a win against a conference rival and traditional powerhouse like Mt. SAC,” coach Dean Lofgren said.

Lopez said when a particular newspaper published a certain headline on the eve the Golden West Invite, it gave her and her teammates a renewed conviction.

“Yeah, when we saw that in the paper, it made us want to go out to show what we’re (capable of),” she said.

The team will be competing in the Irvine Invite Saturday Oct. 9 at 10 a.m. at the Irvine Reginal Park.

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