CLOVIS, Calif. – The Sac-Joaquin Section Division II champion St. Francis cross country team will run for the CIF State Cross Country Championship Saturday morning at 8:30 a.m. at Woodward Park.
"Every year the state meet is challenging," said Head Coach Aaron Rios. "This year we have a realistic shot. We will see if we can mentally and spiritually put it together and snatch one of the top three spots this year."
St. Francis has qualified for the state championship for nine consecutive seasons. The Troubadours return five of their seven runners from the eighth place team in Division II in 2018 and their top seven in 2019 return a combined nine state championship appearances. The school has won one state title (2003) and has been second (2012) and third (2014) in the recent run.
Senior Isabella Fauria has finished individually 10th twice in both 2016 and 2018 and will be running her third championship. Senior Haley Silva will be running in her fourth, while junior Hanna Hekkanen is in her third appearance. Sophomores Cate Joaquin and Tatiana Cornejo both ran last year as freshmen, while sophomore Claire Silva and freshman Daphne Witherell will be making their first run at the CIF meet.
"The experience is invaluable," said Rios. "It is why we go to LA every year to compete against the best teams in Southern California. With Izzy (Fauria) and Haley (Silva) leading the team as seniors with their experience over the four years, it adds to the confidence and maturity of the team. The younger girls really follow that."
Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for students, seniors and children. They may be purchased in advance online at GoFan.co