Arapahoe Warrior and Washington Park Invitational
East Angel Cross Country split squads on Friday, with Boys and Girls Varsity traveling down to the Arapahoe Warrior Invitational and the rest of the team competing at the Washington Park Invite.
Braving Friday afternoon traffic, the varsity squads rendezvoused at DeKovend Park in Littleton where thirty-five teams were getting ready for one of the most competitive early season meets. The crowded field would take on a course that features a couple wet creek crossings and an equal number of short hills and circles around grass fields and a portion of the Highline Canal Trail. The boys would take to the course first. Senior Will Daley put himself in the lead pack from the beginning, closely following the eventual winner before settling for third place at the finish in a time of 16:09. Fellow senior Asher Hoyt would take a more conservative strategy moving up from around 40th early on to a 24th place finish in 17:24. Sophomore Eamon Nussbaum also moved up nicely throughout the race for a 90th place finish in 18:49. Senior Ballard Kauffman (18:56, 99th) and junior Xander Pacini (19:19, 112th) would complete the scoring for the Angels and were followed by seniors Jack Beardsheer (19:33, 128th) and Otto Kauffman (19:33, 129th). When the final scores were tallied, Denver East had finished a very respectable 10th of 29 teams, behind mostly teams currently ranked in the top-15 in 4A or 5A in the state.
The Varsity Girls took off from the starting line immediately after the boys had finished. The East Angels asserted their intention to finish as one of the top teams early. Junior Laura Romero started among the top-10 and would fight her way up to 5th place by the finish in 19:47, a really good time on the DeKovend Park course. Junior Julia Schor (21:00) and seniors Anna Buddenhagen (21:03) and Lindsey Weyant (21:07) put themselves in the top-30 from the start and hung on to finish 24th, 26th and 30th, while juniors Maya Winfield (49th, 21:38), Lilia Scudamore (58th, 21:57), and Grace O’Meara (71st, 22:33) raced in shortly behind them. Denver East’s score of 129 points place them 4th of 24 teams, right amongst some of the top ranked teams in the state.
Slightly closer to home, East Angels would take on a large field of athletes over the mostly flat asphalt and grass course of the Washington Park Invitational. There, the JV-1 teams would take on varsity competition and hold their own quite well. Juniors Abigael Howard and Maya Nussbaumer would lead a pack of Angels over the 5K course, finishing 20th and 22nd respectively in 21:50 and 21:51. Sophomore Annabel Filippini opened her season with a 34th place finish in 22:14, followed by junior AlanaMarie Barros (42nd, 22:40), senior Ellie McWhirter (48th, 22:59) and sophomore Naomi Fry (57th, 23:22). The team finished 5th of 20 teams in this varsity race – the JV finishing only a handful of points behind the varsity teams from South and Northfield.
The Boys Varsity were led by sophomores David Anderson and Jack Kriekels who raced to 75th and 79th place finished in 19:39 and 19:45 respectively. Senior Stephen Evans finished next for the Angels in 87th (20:01), followed by 9th grader Benjamin Hopper (102nd, 20:24), 10th grader Charlie Kruger (115th, 20:44), 9th grader Ian Logan (122nd, 21:02), and 10th grader Allen Harder (132nd, 21:22). The JV-1 boys finished 16th of 26 teams in varsity competition.
Those racing in the Open Divisions at the Washington Park Invite got the opportunity to race over a 3200m course. Highlights for the Angels included senior Elena Thoman’s 14th place finish in 14:33 and 9th grader Bri O’Meara’s 16th place finish in 14:42, as well as the runs by Grace Chambers (24th, 15:01), Sarah Hoffer (25th, 15:01) and Sophia Charles (30th, 15:15). The Girls finished 5th of 19 teams. For the boys, sophomore Frank Buddenhagen (32nd, 12:39) led the way in the open race, followed by James Johnson (47th, 13:06), Elijah Bruggeman (50th, 13:07), Adam Schwartz (56th, 13:13) and 9th grader Jaxson McGuire (60th, 13:16) as the Boys finished a respectable 5th of 21 teams.
Next week nearly everyone will get to compete at the very competitive and fast Liberty Bell Invitational at Heritage High School.