Cross-country CCAA Championship streaks continue

The Chico State men's cross country team took first place for the Wildcats for the 14th year in a row. Photo courtesy of Chico Wildcats.

The Chico State men’s and women’s cross-country teams managed to continue their winning streaks as both teams finished first at the CCAA Championships on Oct. 25 at Golden Gate Park in San Francisco.

The Chico State women's cross country team won their 8th CCAA championship this year in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco. Photo courtesy of Chico Wildcats.

For the men’s team, it was junior Will Reyes leading the charge, taking first overall. He was followed close behind by junior Steven Martinez, who took second. Sophomore Nick Valenzuela came in sixth, first-year Arturo Arevalo came in seventh, junior Aaron Mora in eighth and first-year Steven Velarde came in 11th out of 82 runners on the field for a dominating Chico State performance.

Reyes finished the course in 24:13.6, 16 seconds ahead of Martinez. San Francisco State junior runner Benji Preciado was the third-place finisher with a time of 24:35.0, unable to catch Reyes with a huge 22 second gap between them.

Chico State ended with a score of 24, easily beating second-place Cal Poly Pomona who finished with 46. Chico State averaged a time of 24:40.9, which is 15 seconds faster than the average for Cal Poly Pomona.

Reyes was awarded the men’s CCAA Runner of the Year and CCAA Newcomer of the Year for dominating the season.

This is the men’s cross-country team’s 14th consecutive victory at the CCAA Championship, the longest streak the ‘Cats have accomplished in history.

The women’s team had an equally stunning performance as it outran the competition, taking first place overall for Chico State. Junior McCall Habermehl led the women by coming in first, followed by fellow Wildcat Sadie Gastelum in second place. Senior Quetta Peinado finished in 10th, senior Lora James in 15th, sophomore Alex Burkhart in 18th and junior Haley Kroll in 19th out of 113 competitors.

The women’s team received a total score of 38, easily outpacing second-place team UC San Diego, which scored 61. The average time for the Chico State women’s team was 21:50.62, while UC San Diego finished at 22:02.54.

Habermehl managed to finish the race in 21:33.1, while Gastelum came in right behind at 21:33.5. The first and second place Wildcats finished just one second in front of third place finisher Hannah Bell, a Cal State Monterey Bay senior.

Habermehl was named the women’s CCAA Runner of the Year. This is the eighth straight win for the Chico State women at the CCAA Championship.

The teams will qualify for the NCAA Championships at the NCAA West Regionals on Nov. 7 in Monmouth, Oregon. Stay tuned with the Orion Sports for the comprehensive recap online later this week.

Kenta McAfee can be reached at [email protected] or @KentaMcAfee on Twitter.