Top Empire Prep Cross Country Runners Strong At Stanford

Posted By Press Democrat Staff Writer Michael Coit:

Empire runners turned in some top times at the Stanford Invitational, one of the premier prep cross country meets ahead of league meets.

Leading the boys was Luis Luna of Piner winning the Division III race with the fastest 5 kilometer (3.1 miles) time in Empire history. Luna had the second fastest time in the handful of boys’ races held on Saturday.

Close behind was Alex Conner, from Sonoma Valley, taking second in the Division III race.

Piner finished second in the race, and is ranked eighth in Division III for all of California. The first five Prospectors posted times among the top ten for Empire boys at Stanford – Luna, Jaime Silva, Efren Reyes, Jason Saler and Zekaryas Mebrahtu.

The other top ten Empire runners were: Alexi Taylor, Cardinal Newman, who won the Division IV race; Paul Holden, Ukiah, 7th in Division II; Michael Tomasi, Santa Rosa; and Harrison Luft, Maria Carrillo.

On the girls side, the top three times were El Molino's Nicole Lane, 3rd in Division IV, Sonoma Academy's Katy Lee, 3rd in Division V, and Maria Carrillo's Lauren Kraus, 8th in Division II.

Casa Grande's Ashley Moffett was 11th in Division II and Piner's Kyra Johnson was 14th in Division III.

Rounding out the top ten Empire girls were:  Andrea Natoli, Maria Carrillo; Brynna Thigpen, Maria Carrillo; Dezirae Johnson, Piner; Chloe Hall, Casa Grande; and Andrea Gonzalez, Casa Grande.

Other team highlights included the Sonoma Academy boys placing third in Division V and the Maria Carrillo girls finishing sixth in Division II.