By JOEL TIMBRELL
Special to the Tribune
The Bulldog cross country team traveled to Daly City’s Westmoor High School for the 34th Annual Ram Invitational this past Saturday, Sept. 26, 2015.
Westmoor’s qualifications for medaling were to place in the top 25 finishers that were not on the overall winning team. Athletes in every division raced a total of 2.4 miles, and the hilly course included loops around the campus’s baseball fields and dirt track.
This was the third year in a row that Alhambra runners competed in this meet, and it ended up being the most successful.
At 9:30 a.m. the freshman boys raced. Graham Manning and Alan Kobylik both clocked respectable times, with Manning finishing in 15:43 and Kobylik in 16:42.
The Frosh/Soph girls started their competition at 10:30. Nicole Tria was the only one to represent the high school, but she did so admirably as she crossed the finish line in 23rd place, already collecting a second medal of the season. (Tria medaled at last week’s Farmer Invitational).
Jake Romeo and Gabriel Gonzales started their race at 11:30 a.m. Running in the middle of the pack for the first mile, Romeo moved up several places over the duration of the final 1.4 miles to just edge out Newark Memorial’s top runner for the last individual medal of the race. Gonzales finished with a 19:07 in his first cross country appearance.
Following the conclusion of the Frosh/Soph races, the next to compete for Alhambra were the junior varsity boys. Gabe Winslow also ran an impressive race, finishing the course in under 15 minutes for 25th place to also take home a medal.
Most of the Alhambra girls raced in the varsity division. Erica Cardinale improved her 2014 time by 18 seconds to complete her 2.4 mile race in 16 minutes, 41 seconds. The time was good for a fourth medal for the Bulldog team.
Finally, the varsity boys representatives for the Bulldogs stepped to the line at 3:30 a.m. Noa Nabeshima started out with the section leaders and stayed there until the final 100 meters, where he sprinted past Wilcox’s top runner for eighth place overall. Nabeshima drastically improved his previous time by 38 seconds, ending up with a very fast 13 minutes flat.
Robert Viano also took a place among the medalists with his finishing time of 13:47 in the same race.
With the conclusion of the Ram Invitational, the team looks ahead to this Saturday’s popular Artichoke Invitational at Half Moon Bay, where they will look to collect more medals and then spend a relaxing afternoon on the beach.