By JOE NAIMAN
Ramona High School girls lost to Westview by a 17-43 score when Palomar League cross country competition began in Dos Picos Park on Friday.
“It was kind of what we expected,” said Coach Kim Toth.
The Wolverines captured five of the first six finishing positions in the varsity race.
“They’re fast and it’s a pretty powerful team,” Toth said.
Health issues limited Toth to 12 runners for her varsity and junior varsity squads. Morgan Perkins was already ill prior to the meet, and Toth had to pull Teresa Leon and Anna Mazzola from the race. Toth selected nine Bulldog girls to run in the varsity race while sending three girls to the junior varsity competition.
Lauren Cortez was Ramona’s first finisher and placed fourth overall with a time of 17:48 on the 2.75-mile course.
“I feel very happy with Lauren’s results,” Toth said.
Two freshmen had Ramona’s next two finishes: Francheska Gonzalez placed seventh in her first league race with a time of 18:31 while Cassidy Blankenbaker’s league debut produced a ninth-place time of 18:43.
“Francheska, who’s a freshmen, did excellent, and Cassidy finished strong,” Toth said.
Rachel Brown finished 11th with a time of 20:55, Caitlin Choy’s time of 20:57 gave her 12th place, Kelly Helman took 13th place by crossing the finish line 21:38 after the starter’s gun was fired, and Rachel Lindquist had a 14th-place time of 22:15.
Although the Bulldogs did not have enough runners to receive a team score in the junior varsity race, Toth said she was happy with Ramona’s top JV finisher, sophomore Courtney Ford.
“I wasn’t necessarily expecting that from her, but she pushed herself and she held her ground the entire race,” Toth said.
The Bulldogs travel to Poway for Friday’s league meet against the Titans.