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PHS, THS runners vie for CCC positions
XC pic3
Pitman High’s Frank Finch was the Pride’s top finisher at the CCC Center Meet on Wednesday, as he took fifth place overall. - photo by CHHUN SUN / The Journal

Results from Wednesday’s CCC Meet (3 miles) 

Pitman High 


Frank Finch 16:30

Richard Ketcher 18:01 

Chance Wilverding 18:28.4 

Caleb Wittstruck 18:29.3 

Steth Harvey 18:53 

Ryan Erickson 19:08 

Andrew Garcia 19:29  


Jenna Fontes 19:46 

Morgan Renshaw 20:56 

Brianda Maldonado 21:08 

Maggie Miranda 21:23 

Jami Ford 21:45 

Vicky Alvarado 21:52 

Jordan Garcia 22:09  

Turlock High 


Jorge Guzman 17:09 

Jordan Fong 17:37 

Nico Coleman 17:58 

Ron Barton 18:02 

Jake Eyer 18:03 

Blake Matos 18:06 

Oscar Guzman 18:20  


Alisa Dahl 20:32 

Channing Wilson 20:57 

Amanda Garcia 20:57 

Kaitlyn James 21:25 

Mallory Patino 21:53 

Claire Silva 22:10 

Leslie Beck 22:10

Before this season, when the Pitman High and Turlock High cross country runners placed their feet near the starting line, they only had to worry about a few dozen competitors since the meets had usually no more than three teams.

This season, the competition has multiplied after Los Banos High moved out of the Central California Conference because of league realignments. That meant the remaining six teams agreed to hold three clustered meets this season, in which the first two would determine the team rankings heading into the final gathering.

On a breezy Wednesday afternoon at Donnelly Park, the CCC teams met up for the second time — and it was quite a showcase.The Pitman and Turlock male and female runners got a taste of the league’s fastest runners, and a few of them held their own.

The Pride’s Frank Finch had the best individual showing, as he placed fifth in the 3-mile race with a time of 16 minutes, 30 seconds, which was 1:01 behind winner Quinn Kantor of Merced High.Turlock’s Jorge Guzman clocked in 17:09 to take 13th place overall.

Finch’s finish helped boost Pitman to a fifth-place standing for the CCC Championships on Oct. 27 at Applegate Park in Merced, while the Turlock boys will be ahead one spot at fourth. The Pitman girls are fourth in their division, two positions ahead of last-place Turlock.

This year’s new race format is both loved and hated by local runners.Jenna Fontes, who was Pitman’s top girl runner after finishing in 19:46, likes that there are more runners to compete against, saying, “There’s so many people singling you out.” Turlock’s top girl runner Alisa Dahl, who notched a 13th-place time of 20:32, doesn’t necessarily enjoy the way races are held this season, because there are fewer opportunities to produce good, solid runs.

But every racer involved has learned to adapt.

“Actually, I do and I don’t,” said Finch, Pitman’s top boy runner. “I liked it before when we just had dual meets, the reason being that running with just one other school, you know where your priorities are and who you need to look forward to in league meets. Running in groups like this, you get to do the same thing. But now you have to concentrate with a lot more people.

“Your focus is now on all of them.”

That makes for a competitive race, which was what happened in Wednesday’s so-called CCC cluster meet. The first- and fifth-place finishers for the boys were separated by about a minute, while the same separation for the girls was under 2 minutes.

“There were a lot of good girls out there,” Pitman’s Fontes said about the girls’ race. “I had to inch my way up the race.”