Women’s and men’s cross country teams seasons ended at the Southern California championships held in Costa Mesa on Nov. 3. While neither the team or any individual runner advanced to the state championships, both recorded personal best running times at the event.Kylie Edwards, coach of the women’s team, was extremely enthusiastic about her team’s performance. According to Edwards, the women’s team outperformed preseason expectations.A surprise lead runner for the women’s team was Andrea Villalpando, who is San Diego High School
graduate. Villalpando ran track and field in high
school but had never ran cross country until joining City’s team. She
led City’s team in almost every race of the season and finished 117th
out of 206 runners at the Southern California championships.As a first year runner, Villalpando has the option of joining the team again next year.Men’s coach Paul Greer said that he knew his team was strong enough to make the Southern California championships before the season began. Team leader Enrique Zapata was just 7 places out of contention to qualify for state.”It feels great to have another successful season. I came back this
season knowing it was my last at San Diego City and I wanted to put the
best training in to help the team the most I could,” Zapata said in an email.Greer said men’s cross country has had a 25-30 year dry spell in qualifying for state. As recently as 2010, the men’s team had an individual runner go to state, but not the entire team.City’s inter-conference and community college district competitor Mesa College, qualified for state. The Mesa men’s team finished 7th at the Southern California championship and their women’s team finished 9th.In a previous interview with City Times, Greer said Mesa is always a tough competitor because they have track and field while City does not.”That’s not an excuse,” Greer said about his team normally not doing as well as Mesa. It is a valid reason though, according to Greer, that many good runners who want to attend school at the district go to Mesa instead of City.