In Arlington this past Saturday, the Gainesville Leopards boys cross country team placed fifth out of 23 teams in their regional meet. The Leopards followed winner Lucas Lovejoy, second place Kaufman, third place Sanger and fourth place Argyle.
“The 2010 cross county season for the GHS Leopards started out in August and our goal was to pick up where they left off last year and to get an entire team to regionals,” Gainesville coach Jeff Gerken said. “They accomplished that at district two weeks ago when the boys team placed third behind Sanger and Argyle, both top-10 ranked teams in the state.”
Individually the Leopards all ran personal records.
Gainesville’s top runner Saturday was Giovanni Carranza who placed 11th, missing qualifying for his second appearance at a state meet by .17 of a second.
“Gio ran a super race and just came up a split second short,” Gerken added.
Also runningfor the Leopards were Richard Bean who was 33rd with a time of 17:12, Evey Puente was 37th with a time of 17:20 and Justin Ramirez was 68th with a time of 18:07 in the three-mile race.
As for the rest of the Leopards’ team, Ervin Bean finished 79th with a time of 18:26, Cale Kennedy was 86th with a time of 18:33 and Hunter Goldsworthy placed 138th overall with a time of 20:38.
“I look for big things out of these guys in the years to come,” Gerken said. “Even our young guys ran extremely well. Justin is our only senior. He will be missed for sure as his determination and dedication will be hard to replace. But with four returning juniors from this top-5 the future is very bright for GHS cross country.”
Gerken added that he is proud of every one of his runners for placing their personal-best times at regionals.
“For everyone of them to run their best times ever in a race of this importance says a lot about them,” he said. “I asked them to leave it all on the course and I believe they did just that, every step and stride they had they left on that course. They represented GHS and Gainesville in a way that everyone should make everyone proud.”