By Joe Naiman
Ramona High School junior Forrest Riley finished fifth in the boys 3,200-meter race during the CIF San Diego Section track and field finals May 26 at Mt. Carmel High School.
Riley set a personal record with a time of 9:17.42.
“He ran his best race of his life,” said Coach Sherri Edwards. “I’m pleased with how he ran.”
The top three finishers qualified for the state meet. Carlsbad junior Christian Freeman took third place at 9:11.52. La Costa Canyon sophomore Steven Fahy had a time of 9:17.41 to lean Riley for fourth place. Riley’s previous personal record of 9:21.38 was set during the May 19 CIF preliminary heats. Ramona junior Tristan Stidham placed 12th in the boys 3,200-meter race with a time of 9:44.28.
“Tristan was disappointed. He would have liked to have run better,” Edwards said.
The race evolved into two packs, and Stidham led the second pack. He was unable to close the gap. “Once he got kind of separated it was hard for him to do better,” Edwards said.
Ramona senior Lauren Cortez closed out her high school career by finishing 11th in the girls 3,200-meter race. She had a time of 12:15.18.
“Her first three laps were the same times as she ran last week, and then she just dropped off,” Edwards said.
Cortez had a time of 11:25.70 in the preliminaries, which placed 10th among Division I girls. She plans to continue her running career at Cal State University San Marcos.