By: Kloe Adams
And that’s a wrap on the Los Gatos High School cross country season! Following league finals on Nov. 11 was the much anticipated CCS championship in Crystal Springs, Belmont. The trail for both meets was 2.95 miles long, set in the hills above San Francisco.
Juniors Shea Elmore and Aydon Stefanopoulos led their teams all season to astounding victories. Elmore traversed the long and winding course, finishing with a time of 19:07:8. When commenting about her win, Elmore stated, “It felt really good, it’s been my goal for the past couple of years to win league [again]. Last year, I didn’t have my best season, so it feels good to finally come back stronger this season.” Elmore was not the only one to impress; a fleet of Los Gatos runners followed closely behind. Juniors Taylor Chesarek, Tatum Pyle, Sarina Salzer-Swartz, Zoe Williamson, senior Claire Liu, and freshman Elise Greenstreet all finished in top ten places. Following the meet Elmore commented on the team chemistry: “It’s been so fun because we’ve really come together as a team. We’re always supporting each other at practice, and we’re all really good friends off the track.”
The boys’ cross country team also took the title of winner at the league finals. Stefanopoulos led his team to victory, winning the individual title with a time of 15:28. Close behind, junior Ben Klarich took fourth place at 15:56.9. Not far behind Stefanopoulos and Klarich, senior Jensen Bidmead, Adam Wang, and sophomore Ryan Sacco all finish strong in top 20 places.
Coming off wins at league finals, both the boys’ and girls’ teams gave it their all at their final meet at CCS. Division two boys came in fourth place overall with division two girls taking a podium spot at third place. Stefanopoulos finished in second place to Palo Alto, leading his team. Los Gatos’ Bidmead and Klarich followed Stefanopoulos in eleventh and 24th place. Elmore completed the run in fifth place followed by Chesarek and Liu in 19th and 22nd place.
Los Gatos High School’s cross country coach Paul Lawryk not only led his team to becoming league champions, but was named this year’s CCS Cross Country Honor Coach. Los Gatos Athletic Director Ken Perrotti released a statement on a LGHS Athletics Twitter post, saying, “Paul works tirelessly to provide a home for any and all athletes that want to run. Coach Lawryk is kind, personable and well liked by his athletes. His communication skills with athletes, fellow coaches, staff, school admin, parents and our community are second to none.”
(Sources: Los Gatan, Mile Split)