Murrieta Cross Country Runners Advance to CIF Competition

Vista Murrieta varsity boys cross country and Great Oak girls varsity take first place in Southwestern League finals.

The six high school cross country teams from the Southwestern League came together Thursday afternoon to compete for the league championships.

When all was said and done, the varsity boys from Vista Murrieta and the varsity girls from Great Oak came out on top.

Boys Varsity

The 2.95-mile course is situated on the east side of Diamond Valley Lake in Hemet. The weather was near perfect and the course conditions prompted the athletes to push for excellent times and personal records.

Vista Murrieta senior Porter Reddish won his varsity race with a time of 14:43.9. His teammate senior Omar Solis finished second (14:54.9).

Murrieta Valley’s top finisher was Ismail Herrera in eighth place (15:26.6) followed by Murrieta Mesa’s Tanner Long in ninth (15:33.4).

As a team, the top five runners scored a combined 31 points to beat out Temecula’s Great Oak squad who finished with 37 points (low score wins).  Murrieta Mesa finished third with 93 points, just edging out Chaparral with their 94 points. Murrieta Valley finished sixth with 147 points behind fifth-place Temecula Valley.

The top three varsity teams advance to next Saturday’s CIF-Southern Section Prelims at Mt. San Antonio College in Walnut.

Boys Varsity Team Scores:

Vista Murrieta 31

Great Oak 37

Murrieta Mesa 93

Chaparral 94

Temecula Valley 142

Murrieta Valley 147


Girls Varsity

Vista Murrieta’s girls varsity team, led by senior Sarah Benson’s 10th-place finish in 18:04.9, finished second with 63 points behind Great Oak’s 21 points.  Ashley Helbig of Great Oak finished first (17:14.1).

Of significant note was the second-place finish of sophomore Taylor Taite of Murrieta Mesa (17:18.1). Runners finishing in positions one through six who aren’t otherwise a member of a CIF playoff-bound team are rewarded with a place at the starting line at next week’s CIF-SS Prelims. Temecula Chaparral’s Chandler Kerr finished in sixth place and joins Taite next week at Mt. SAC.

Girls Varsity Team Scores:

Great Oak 21

Vista Murrieta 63

Temecula Valley 83

Chaparral 101

Murrieta Mesa 122

Murrieta Valley 146


Boys JV

Top finisher from each Murrieta school:

Clinton Tak – 2nd place (16:05.6); Vista Murrieta

Mason Figge – 9th place (16:32.0); Murrieta Mesa

AJ Aldrian – 48th place (17:47.8); Murrieta Valley


Boys JV Team Scores:

Great Oak 19

Vista Murrieta 48

Murrieta Mesa 79

Chaparral 118

Murrieta Valley 148

Temecula Valley 171


Girls JV

Top finisher from each Murrieta school:

Emily Russi – 10th place (19:25.9); Vista Murrieta

Macayla Meras – 28th place (20:43.9); Murrieta Mesa

Vanessa Corzine – 47th place (21:42.1); Murrieta Valley


Girls JV Team Scores:

Great Oak 15

Vista Murrieta 50

Temecula Valley 83

Murrieta Mesa 117

Chaparral 130

Murrieta Valley 151


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