Earning a top-50 finish to close out the season at the 26th annual CIF State Cross Country Championships Saturday at Woodward Park in Fresno was a fitting end for two local standouts.
Manteca High junior Harleen Pabla and Ryan Torres of Ripon High each raced to a respectable finishes in their return trips.
Pabla placed 45th out of 185 Division III girls harriers, finishing in 19 minutes, 15 seconds. It was a big improvement from her sophomore appearance, when she took 84th in 19:52.
Torres, a senior competing at state for a third straight season, was 9 seconds off his personal best time, ending up 42nd in 16:41 in the Division IV race.
Sierra junior Josh Spooner and Ripon High freshman Ellie Waters made their first appearances at the state meet. Spooner clocked a time of 16:39 for 68th place in Division III. Waters finished 144th in 21:57 in Division IV girls.
The 5,000-meter course is the regular home to the cross-country finale and was in peak condition, with temperatures in the upper 60s and lower 70s. Over 1,200 runners showed up to compete in the season-ending event.
Sarah Baxter of Simi Valley High set a course record of 16:40 in the Division I girls’ race. The win Saturday was good for her third consecutive state championship win.