AHS’ First Cross Country Meet


Jorge Espinoza-Gonzalez, Staff Writer

Since March of 2020, we have been quarantined at home. No more gatherings. No more school. No more sports. But recently, the cases of the virus have been decreasing. As fewer and fewer cases have been reported, some of the restrictions have been lifted or eased, including those on sports.

As a result, members of our Boys and Girls Cross Country (XC) teams, many of whom have been training on their own since this time last year, finally had their first meet of the season. The meet took place on Mar. 6, and it was a great way to start off the season. The meet was between Pasadena High School (PHS) and Arcadia High School (AHS). There was no distinction between the JV and Varsity teams in this race.

“It had been a year since our team had competed, so we were happy to finally race another team,” said the Boys Cross Country Coach Chris Lee.

“I’m definitely glad to be back racing competitively,” said Quinn Hettich, one of runners on the Boys Varsity Cross Country team.

He added that the race “made me feel like months of training completely by myself weren’t for nothing.”

The race was held on the track at Crescenta Valley High School. While PHS had the 1st place winners on the boys’ and girls’ sides, AHS placed 2nd to 6th overall.

The top three runners from the AHS Girls Cross Country team at this meet were: Katarina Weisinger at 13:10 minutes, Samantha Wong at 13:23 minutes, and Catherine Chen at 16:22 minutes.

The top three from the AHS Boys Cross Country team were: Will Kelley at 10:00 minutes, Mathew Ho at 10:05 minutes, and Brandon Chang at 10:20 minutes.

This XC meet demonstrated that sports can still occur during a pandemic. One of the biggest changes that had to be made to the traditional XC meets—which are typically quite large—was in regard to spectators. This season, the XC coaches decided that there would be no spectators.

“We streamed it on our team Facebook page… spectators are not allowed yet,” said Coach Lee.

“The lack of spectators made the track feel empty,” Quinn added.

The runners were faced with changes to the format of the competition as well. For example, the racers had to run a two-mile race instead of their typical three. In addition, the runners had to run with their masks on.

“I’m glad major precautions were made to ensure COVID safety among the athletes,” said Quinn.

In short, although it may not have been like races prior to COVID-19, this was the first step to starting up sports again. The XC meet was a success in terms of both final placements and overall morale. AHS athletes are now able to get back to the grind, not only showing dedication and love of their sport, but also exemplifying that sports are still possible.


Photo courtesy of Chris Lee