FOLSOM — Saturday’s Delta River League cross country championship meet was full of side stories.
The 2010 defending champion Oak Ridge varsity boys were on a mission after coming in second to Pleasant Grove in an earlier DRL meet.
“We lost the first league meet and wanted to come back,” Ryan Prestegard said.
The team got the job done. Led by Dusty Armstrong, who finished sixth in 17 minutes flat, the boys won the race and the league championship with freshman Sean McHone, Prestegard, a sophomore, and juniors Marcos Conde, Jake Zeltner, Zach Thornton and Evan Baxter all filing down the chute in the top 20.
“It was a fantastic day. We were all really motivated,” Conde said.
The boys team scored 52 points to finish ahead of Pleasant Grove (61), Folsom (73), Jesuit (82), Ponderosa (130) and Sheldon (135).
“We ran as a team and stuck together,” McHone said.
Armstrong and McHone both made the all league team with their top 10 finishes.
“The varsity boys raced strategically very well. They didn’t go out too fast and ran a very solid second loop,” Oak Ridge coach Rob Fairley said. “The top seven runners were within 33 seconds of each other which is a fairly tight group.”
Ponderosa had its own reason for celebrating — the return of top runner Riley Ruppenthal to championship form. After undergoing knee surgery in March, Ruppenthal spent the summer rehabbing, which included competing for the Sierra Sharks swim team for the first time in two years. He was first to come in, finishing in 16:40 to win the league title.
“My goal was to be the league champ,” Ruppenthal said. “The race started slow so I took the lead earlier than I’d planned and kept it. I finished hard — sprinted the last part. It makes all the work worth it.”
The Oak Ridge girls varsity team finished second behind powerhouse St. Francis. Senior Maxine Goyette was the third runner in with a time of 19:44. She was followed by freshmen Ellie Velez (fifth), Sabrina Andrus (14th) and Maddie Dezordo (17th). Sophomore Rachel Peterson was sixth and senior Holli Arrieta, who has also spent the summer rehabbing an injury, finished 18th.
“The girls had a solid perfomance,” Fairley said. “Unfortunately two of our varsity runners, Reaghan Emrick and Mikayla Mefford, couldn’t race because of injuries but Sabrina and Maddie stepped up and did very well.”
St. Francis won the final league standings, followed by Oak Ridge and Ponderosa.
Ponderosa’s frosh/soph boys won Saturday’s meet, but the Trojans, who took second, won the league title with 12 total season points to the Bruins’ 10. Ponderosa was second in the final standings, followed by Jesuit and Sheldon in third.
Bruin Josh Bolier is the frosh/soph champion. TJ Holloway was sixth, Lee Skinner took seventh, Marcus Nunley was eighth and Charles Hedin was 10th. Oak Ridge was led by Jordan Hordesky (third), JT Janecek (fourth) and Colin Pilcher (fifth). All earned DRL all-league honors.
Oak Ridge took third in the frosh/soph girls race and third in the league standings. The team was led by Sami Kilcollins (sixth), Whitney Wilhelmy (eighth) and Aishani Kumar (11th). Ponderosa did not enter a team.
The division (sub-section) meet is Saturday, Nov. 5 at Frogtown in Angels Camp. The Sac-Joaquin Section Masters meet follows on Friday, Nov. 11. The top two Division I girls and boys varsity teams from the entire section will qualify to run in the CIF State Meet Nov. 26 at Fresno’s Woodward Park.
Varsity boys, 5K: 1-Oak Ridge, 52; 2-Pleasant Grove, 61; 3-Folsom, 73; 4-Jesuit, 82; 5-Ponderosa, 130; 6-Sheldon, 135.
Individual: 1-Riley Ruppenthal, P, 16:30; 6-Dusty Armstrong, OR, 17:00; 9-Sean McHone, OR, 17:04; 11-Marcos Conde, OR, 17:11; 12-Ryan Prestegard, OR, 17:21; 14-Jake Zeltner, OR, 17:23; 16-Zach Thornton, OR, 17:26; 19-Evan Baxter, OR, 17:33; 63-Josh Michael, OR, 21:09.
Varsity girls: 1-St. Francis, 26; 2-Oak Ridge, 43; 3-Ponderosa, 71; 4-Pleasant Grove, 103; 5-Sheldon, 131.
Individual: 3-Maxine Goyette, OR, 19:44; 5-Ellie Velez, OR, 19:51; 6-Rachel Peterson, OR, 19:52; 14-Sabrina Andrus, OR, 20:42; 17-Maddie Dezordo, OR, 20:53; 18-Holli Arrieta, OR, 21:16; 28-Taylor Ashby, OR, 22:17; 33-Abby Walker, OR, 23:00.
Frosh/soph boys: 1-Ponderosa, 32; 2-Oak Ridge, 43; 3-Sheldon, 74; 4-Jesuit, 77; 5-Pleasant Grove, 132; 6-Folsom, 173
Individual: 1-Josh Bolier, P, 11:31; 3-Jordan Hordesky, OR, 11:59; 4-JT Janecek OR, 12:04; 5-Colin Pilcher, OR, 12:06; 15-Nick Campanello, OR, 12:30; 16-Brett Ford, OR, 12:33; 17-Alex Merry, OR, 12:36; 20-Bret McNamee, OR, 12:52; 38-Zac Forte, OR, 13:21; 47-Garrett Bardini, OR, 13:59; 48-Kyle Dennison, OR, 14:04; 56-Taylor Savage, OR, 14:33; 57-Joey Linares, OR, 14:35; 72-Ian Feekes, OR, 15:48; 75-Justin Hong, OR, 16:10.
Frosh/soph girls: 1-St. Francis, 31; 2-Sheldon, 42; 3-Oak Ridge, 54; 4-Folsom, 107
Individual: 6-Sami Kilcollins, OR, 14:00; 8-Whitney Wilhelmy, OR, 14:07; 11-Aishani Kumar, OR, 14:42; 14-Femke Keukenkamp, OR, 14:51; 15-Alison Bamford, OR, 14:51; 21-Sarah Reinhart, OR, 15:15; 22-Mindy Ong, OR, 15:17; 27-Lauren Martinez, OR, 15:38; 28-Maile Tostenson, OR, 15:40; 37-Sami Jo Sanfelice, OR, 17:05.