Island sports: Alameda High men’s cross-country update
Alameda High School Men’s Cross Country at Lowell Invitational
By Chris Carlson
The Alameda High Men’s Cross Country team began its 2010 campaign by sending 26 athletes to the Lowell Invitational in San Francisco. The meet, held in balmy weather at Golden Gate Park on September 18, drew runners from the greater Bay Area and from schools as far away as Placerville and Stockton. Despite graduating four top 20 finishers from last year’s North Coast Championships, Alameda men’s team, which is coached by Nino Hernandez with assistant coach Marty Beene, delivered some notable performances.
During a freshmen-only race, Cameron Tu finished sixth in a field of 185, completing the 2.13 mile frosh/soph course with an excellent time of 12:47 and leading his team to a fourth place finish in a 20-team field. Additional scorers were Miguel Hidalgo – 19th (13:39), Andrew Liu – 24th (13:43), Jonathan Chan – 35th (14:22) and Nathan Yick – 74th (15:18). Because this was the first competitive race for many in this group, the coaches were very pleased with their efforts.
A special highlight came during a sophomores-only race. During the last mile, Alameda’s Steven Carlson passed four runners to win impressively with a time of 12:17. Also surging were scoring teammates Duc Nguyen – 6th (12:35), Michael Moler – 11th (12:50), Reese Kamphuis – 28th (13:39) and Karl Bliven – 29th (13:41). The team placed second out of 20 teams.
Hornet runner Nick Liu – 24th (18:13) led newcomers Vinh Ha – 38th (18:55) and Chris McMillan – 97th (20:48) in a Junior Varsity race featuring 178 runners. Coach Hernandez remarked these were great first performances over the longer 2.93 mile JV/Varsity distance.
The final event of the day, on the 2.93 mile course, found a five-man Alameda Varsity team placing 10th out of 20 teams racing. In a race stacked with talent, Emmanuel Boquiren placed 46th (17:03), followed by Taylor Hadidian – 51st (17:09), Daniel Arnstein – 52nd (17:12), Tyler Parsons – 60th (17:24) and Nicholas Raber – 103rd (19:40). The Alameda coach was pleased and called those sub 17:30 efforts over nearly three miles breakout performances for these developing athletes.
Coach Hernandez is confident his runners will continue to build on this successful start. He acknowledges that many in the high school running community believe the Alameda program needs time for its rebuilding plan to take shape and, once again, challenge at the NCS Championships or travel to the state meet. If these early 2010 results are any indication, his talented young Alameda runners appear determined to put those plans into action.
The Hornets’ next race was the RAM Invitational on September 25 in Daly City.