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High school cross-country rallies in Gunnison race this weekend

“To have two CB girls in the top five is great”

by Than Acuff

While Sydney Petersen and Maria O’Neal posted the top results for the Titans cross-country team in their race in Gunnison on Saturday, September 17, the entire team stepped up their game to put in their top efforts of the season thus far.

“I think things went well all the way around,” says coach Austin Ross.

Ross credits a couple of things for the Titans’ performances in Gunnison. First of all, the coaches mixed up their training pattern the week leading up to the race, mixing in back-to-back hard workouts followed by two days of recovery.

“I think it was a little bit better preparation,” says Ross.

In addition, the Titans have been focusing on speed and consistency to make the most of the string of flat courses on their schedule. Toss in the fact that the race was in Gunnison, relatively higher than most of the other races, and the stage was set for Titans to succeed.

“It’s a pretty ideal location for us to run,” says Ross.

O’Neal and Petersen took the opportunity to shine in Gunnison as the two Titan girls ran together throughout most of the race, working off of each other to stay in the mix and ultimately finish in the top five, with Petersen in fourth place and O’Neal finishing in fifth.

“This was the first time they ran together for most of the race and they worked together the whole race and that’s a really positive development,” says Ross. “To have two Crested Butte girls in the top five is great.”

While results among the Titan boys may not appear as impressive on paper, Ross saw all four of his boys lay down their best races of the season so far.

“The boys all ran really well,” says Ross. “It was awesome to see four boys out there together.”

Vincent Michel led the boy’s team, posting his fastest time of the season placing 38th out of 132 runners, while Jude Eaton rallied to a personal best as well.

The Titans will remain working on speed and consistency this week as they prepare for another trip to Grand Junction to race in the Anna Banana on Saturday, September 24.

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