FARMINGTON — For the second week in a row and the third time in four weeks, the Lady Chieftains cross-country team came out on top of its meet.
On Friday, it was the Four Corners Invite at Berg Park in Farmington that Shiprock conquered, placing first overall out of six teams.
"It was our first small meet of the season, so we worked on a tight pack time," Shiprock coach Alice Kinlichee said. "The girls ran their best pack time so far at 43 seconds. It was a tremendous performance."
As usual, Lacey Howe paced the Lady Chieftains by finishing third overall with a time of 19 minutes and 56 seconds.
Destiny Rockwell, T'yana Harry and Casey Peters finished fifth through seventh, and Khadija Lapahie and Sabrina Gould snagged ninth and 10th to round out another dominant performance by the Lady Chieftains.
The Shiprock boys also had an excellent day, taking second out of the seven teams who ran at Berg Park. The Chieftains lost to Window Rock by just one point.
"I'm really happy," Shiprock coach Brian Paniagua said. "I wasn't expecting us to do that well. We've been working on our pack time like we have all year and we finally got it together. We got it down to a 48-second pack."
Aaron Gould was the top runner for Shiprock. He ran a 17:22, good for sixth place.
Kirtland Central finished in third place, just three points behind the Chieftains.
"No excuses, but we just kind of wanted to train through this," KC coach Lenny Esson said. "Since we didn't see a lot of teams we wanted to train through and get some miles in our legs this week. So a couple of the boys were running a little fatigued."
Kashon Harrison took first place for the second straight week. Aaron Bunny was third.
The Kirtland girls finished fourth and LaKyla Yazzie was the top-ranked Lady Broncos runner, just like last week. She earned second place and finished 22 seconds ahead of Shiprock's Howe.
For Navajo Prep coach Stephanie McDonald, the boys team finished in fourth and the girls took sixth.
"For it being homecoming week, I was impressed with how everybody showed up," McDonald said. "I was impressed with most everyone's time. We just need to bring our sixth and seventh pack runners up."
Freshman Justina Slim was the top Lady Eagles runner with a time of 22:36. Mathis Quintana topped the boys and broke the 18-minute mark for the first time this year, according to McDonald. His time was 17:50.
The Aztec girls placed third in Farmington. Elana Kresl was outstanding, placing fourth individually with a time of 20:15.
For the fifth-place finishing boys squad, Andrew Day was the highest placing Tiger at 14th.
"Our kids performed well, it was the first time we had run this course and with it being a flat course, our kids were a little nervous," Tigers coach Steve Lanier said. "They seemed to really like the run next to the river."
The Bloomfield cross-country clubs were supposed to run in Saturday's Totah Invite, but it was cancelled so they competed in Farmington.
Bloomfield continued to struggle, as the boys and girls each wound up in last place.
Clayton White was the top runner for the boys at 32nd overall. On the girls side, Katelin Kosea took 37th place.
Bloomfield coach Julian Garcia said he is encouraging his teams not to hang their heads.
"I just tell the boys and girls to keep plugging away. Good things happen when you work hard," he said. "We had good times, just not fast enough to get in the top echelon yet."
Farmington boys get 2nd in Colorado, girls take 3rd
The Farmington teams had a good showing in the Pagosa Springs Wolf Creek Invitational in Pagosa Springs, Colo., on Saturday.
The boys team earned second out of eight teams and the Lady Scorpions took third out of eight.
McKinzey Allee won the girls race with a time of 20:45. Danny Hickman finished third in the boys race and was timed at 17:41.
Farmington coach Kevin Deswood said he thought his girls could have done even better had they been at full strength.
"We were without Kassidy Nez, who's got a commitment with the soccer team also," he said.
PV teams finish in the middle of the pack in Albuquerque
The Piedra Vista girls finished 10th out of 18 teams, while the boys were 12th out of 23 in Friday's Academy Invite in Albuquerque.
"It was a little warm, and the kids had to take what the conditions and the course gave them," PV coach Sampson Sage said.
Ryan Kruger had a good day, finishing 30th overall with a time of 17:17. For the girls, Paris Chee and Cassandra Crowell stood out for the Lady Panthers. Chee finished with a time of 20:58, good for 33rd, while Crowell finished just 18 seconds behind her.