Harleen Pabla is certainly capable of running cross country at the next level.
Not only is the Manteca High senior a three-time state qualifier and this year’s reigning MVP of the Valley Oak League, but she already has NAIA schools like the College of Idaho inquiring about her.
Pabla made a return to Fresno’s Woodward Park for the CIF State Cross Country Championships on Nov. 30, where her all-time best was a 19-minute, 15-second finish her junior campaign (45th place).
This year as a senior, Pabla took 103rd and clocked a 21:12 at cross country’s pinnacle event.
Pabla was named the Bulletin’s 2013 Runner of the Year for her efforts.
This year Pabla punched her ticket to state after taking seventh at the Sac-Joaquin Section Division III race at Willow Hill Reservoir in Folsom with a 20:07. Pabla finished in back of two Vista Del Lago runners, one which was Sarah Anderson, the Division III first-place fiisher with a 19:21.
Some of Pabla’s other highlights from her senior season in which she bounced back from a lung surgery were: a first-place finish at the two-mile Lagoon Valley Classis on Sept. 7 with a 14:02 and a second place medal at the VOL’s second meet on Oct. 9 (20:31). She was also in the top 10 at the Jaguar Invitational on Aug. 30, and placed 16th at the Nov.9 Sac-Joaquin Subsection meet at Frogtown in Angels Camp (20:07).
During the 2011-12 season, as a sophomore Pabla became the first Buffalo to qualify for state since Amy Birmingham in 1997. Her sophomore season, she finished in 84th after recording a 19:52.
During that season, Pabla also took second at the Lagoon Valley Classic with a 14:17. She took first place at the Pacific Tiger Invitational on Oct. 1, 2011, with a 20:23. She finished out her historical sophomore campaign by taking 34th at subsections, followed by a 7th at sections and then 84th at state.
Her junior season, was the strongest on paper.
Pabla had two second-place finishes at invites and took seventh at subsections and then moved on to place 13th at sections (20:01) followed by 45th in Fresno.