Desert Solstice Cross Country Festival 2016

author Web Master - DVCC (Sep, 11 2016)

Depth on Display


DVCC freshmen and sophomore runners get things going at the Desert Solstice Cross Country Festival

[This article is courtesy of Senior Co-Captain Clark Scalia]

The Thunder once again had a strong showing as they traveled down to Tucson on Friday, September 9th to compete in the Desert Solstice Invitational. The meet, held at Crooked Tree Golf Course, is relatively young as this year was only the 3rd year of the competition being held.

To start off the evening’s races was the freshman/sophomore race where the Thunder competed well taking second, despite hot temperatures in the area. First to cross the finish line for DV was sophomore Neal Saxena (18:34) followed closely by freshman Noah Werbelow (18:34). The final three scorers were sophomores Milan Patel (18:45), David Syms (18:59), and Marshal Smith (19:04) with sophomore Ryan Hickman (19:05) and freshman Niccolo Perciballi (19:06) rounding out the Thunder’s top seven runners. Place wise, all of Desert Vista’s runners finished in the top 30 with each athlete taking the following places, respectively: 11th, 12th, 17th, 25th, 26th, 27th, and 28th. Overall, the underclassmen finished very well coming second with a team score of 91 points.

Next to take the field for the Thunder were the juniors and seniors who went virtually unchallenged as the first seven finishers went 2nd, 3rd, 5th, 9th, 10th, and 11th in this race. Leading off for the team was junior Michael Tuli (17:21), followed by senior DJ Johnson (17:25), senior co-captain Clark Scalia (17:33), junior Grant Cuyler (17:46), senior Steven Romero (17:49), and senior Aidan Schramm (17:51). An honorable mention must be made to junior David Neighbors who barely missed the top finishers coming in 12th place with a time of 17:59. Not surprisingly, the Thunder took first place with a team score of just 27 points, 60 points ahead of second place Highland.

For the final two races of the night, the Thunder ran a split varsity team of 8 runners which is a unique aspect of the Desert Solstice Meet. In the first varsity race, sophomore Lee Nasewytewa placed 4th with a blistering time of 16:33, freshman Sammy Van Alstine finished in 6th (16:44), senior Nicholas Walrod in 15th (17:02), and junior Jack Willems in 34th (17:25). For the second race of the varsity competition, junior Bryce Schmisseur (16:34), junior Nicholas Thatcher (16:37), and senior Leo Crowder (16:38) all finished one after another coming in 21st, 22nd, and 23rd place with senior Jackson Hickey (17:05) not far off in 34th place.

Overall, the Thunder had an outstanding meet which they will look to build upon as the season progresses. Coach Hanson stressed to the boys after the meet that while they ran an impressive meet, their attitudes must not become complacent as it is still early in the season. Desert Vista is looking for its third straight boys cross country state title and possesses all the talent and firepower to repeat as state champs, all they need to do is stay focused.

Next week the Thunder head into the thick of the competitive season with the Varsity (top 7 athletes) heading to California to run in the ultra-competitive Woodbridge Cross-Country Invitational while the Junior Varsity stays in the Valley for the King of the Mountain Invite held in Mesa. As always, thank you to the parents, booster members, and coaches for making everything DVCC does possible.

Related Information:

  • Meet website can be found here.
  • Race Results can be found here.
  • Pictures can be found here.

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