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Sierra tandem returning to state; EU, RC runners also advance
CC--SJS Championships pic 1
Sierras Jesse Hurtado (2141) and Noe Reyes (772) of East Union qualified for the CIF State Championships after placing fourth and ninth, respectively in the Sac-Joaquin Section Championships on Friday. - photo by JONAMAR JACINTO/Bulletin file photo

FOLSOM — Sierra juniors Megan Oblin and Jesse Hurtado are heading back to the CIF State Championships, and they’ll have company with two other Manteca-area harriers earning their spots Friday in the Sac-Joaquin Section Championships held at Willow Hill Reservoir.
For Oblin, she’ll make a third straight appearance at Woodward Park in Fresno on Saturday, Nov. 25. She set a personal record at the section meet, placing third in 19 minutes, 15.2 seconds behind Vista del Lago’s Sydnee Kiziar (19:02.1) and Merced’s Quinn Hagerman (19:12.7) in the Division III race. East Union’s Julia Vezaldenos finished 24th in 20:48.1.
Kiziar paced Vista del Lago (48 points) to the Division III girls team title. Four-time defending Valley Oak League champion Sierra took seventh with 156 points. Only the top three teams and top 10 individuals not on qualifying teams in the division move on.
In Division III boys, Hurtado finished fourth for a second straight season, clocking in at 16:41.5. East Union’s Noe Reyes also advances to state after placing ninth in 16:56.61.
Sierra (124) and East Union (174) ended up sixth and eighth, respectively, in the boys Division III team standings. Vista del Lago is the section champion with 83 points, and Nevada Union’s Garrett Gough (16:05.6) captured the individual crown.
Other notable competitors in Division III boys were Sierra’s Isaias Ghezae (17th, 17:24.6) and East Union freshman Charlie Sanders (19th, 17:32.9).
Ripon Christian freshman Elle Van Wyngarde rounds out area qualifiers for state after she placed eighth (21:42.8) in Division V. The Lady Knights placed seventh (147) as a team.
Ripon’s girls came the closest to qualifying as a team, taking fourth (127) in Division IV. Indians senior Kayla Jacklich (14th, 20:53.1) spearheaded area runners in the race, with Weston Ranch freshman Jasmine Basco (20th, 21:22.1) and Lathrop’s Maria Soto (23rd, 21:1.4) close behind.
Ripon’s boys placed 10th in Division IV. Brian Arevalo of Weston Ranch narrowly missed a state berth in the division as the 13th-place finisher in 17:03.9. Bear River’s Camden Criesco (10th, 16:46.0) seized the final berth.

Lower levels
The top two teams and eight individuals not part of the championship and runner-up groups earned awards in the lower-level competition.
Ripon Christian had three individual medalists in Division V frosh-soph girls: Meghan Johnston (fourth, 16:34.1), Natalie Mendes (fifth, 17:94.1) and Allison Mendes (eighth, 17:27.0).
Sierra had two award winners in Division III sophomore boys: Irving Figueroa (10th overall, 12:21.9) and Axel Rios (12th, 12:23.0). The Timberwolves’ girls placed seventh in junior varsity girls.
East Union’s Noe Acevedo checked in with the 10th-place time of 13:01 for Division III freshman boys. The East Union frosh-soph girls team took fourth.
In Division IV sophomore boys, Gavin Keane (18th, 13:11.1) captured the final available individual medal while leading the Indians’ sixth-place team finish.