Athletes in girls golf, cross country and boys tennis are continuing play in the Valley Oak League this spring, taking part in Season 1 of a projected two-season school year. Here is a wrap of this past week’s action for the teams.
Cougar cross country runners had the chance to get out on the course for this first meet of the season on Wednesday, Feb. 24. They took on the Sierra Timberwolves out of Manteca.
“For one year we are in the VOL (Valley Oak League) so we stay in our county for competitions,” said head coach Rick Heflin. “It has been a rough year starting the program. We started in July training but with all of the fires and COVID push backs, it has been a long season already. Our numbers are down for many reasons during these trying times but the kids that represented Escalon (Wednesday) were full of spirit and wanted a chance to race.”
Sierra won the varsity boys race and Escalon won the girls race. For the varsity boys, top finisher for Escalon was Josh Churchill in seventh at 22:44. He was followed by Dillan Booth, eighth, 22:56; Brandon Granda, ninth, 24:00; Grady Fugett, 10th, 24:12.
Jacen Peoples placed 11th overall in 24:48; with Jose Calderon 12th in 25:06; and Marcos Grajeda, 13th in 25:37.
For the girls, taking first place overall honors was Laura Thompson, running the course in 16:41. Placing second through seventh for Escalon were: Karla Cordova, 17:13; Samantha Torres, 17:21; Belen Lechuga, 18:00; Gorette Coelho, 18:15; Ryan Walker, 18:21; Molly Terpstra 18:30.
The frosh/soph boys did not have a full team but taking second was Jacob Beneux in 16:11 and third was Victor Romero at 16:54, with Andrew Morales fifth in 17:22.
“We will have four more meets this season,” Heflin said.
The Lady Cougars took the course for just one match this past week. A contest scheduled with Weston Ranch on Feb. 22 was canceled since the Weston Ranch squad had only had one girl available for the contest.
Wednesday, Feb. 24 at Escalon, it was a Valley Oak League victory for the host team, defeating Kimball by a 186-232 final. Five scores were counted.
Playing for Escalon were: Lucy Allbaugh, 30; Ella MacKinnon, 35; Ella Adams, 37; Emma Guevara, 41; Bella Ambro, 43; Nathalia Guevara 45; Sarah Bava, 47; Gracie Bracco, 52.
“Lucy is playing really well. As a team we keep improving each match,” said coach Kristie Cathcart. “Girls are practicing hard during our scheduled practices and most play and get lessons on their own which helps tremendously.”
The girls will be at home this week as well, facing off against East Union and Manteca.
“Looking forward to playing against East Union, since they have been one of the top teams in the VOL,” Cathcart noted.
After getting their season underway in mid-February, the Cougar boys did not have an opportunity to play this past week. They were scheduled to play Kimball on Feb. 23 but their opponents did not have a coach or a team. Thursday, they were to take on Central Catholic but the Raiders had to reschedule due to a COVID situation. The match has been set for Friday, March 5 at 3:30 p.m. in Escalon.
The Cougars were also scheduled to host Weston Ranch on Tuesday, March 2 after The Times went to press and travel to Sierra for a Thursday, March 4 contest before hosting Central in the make-up match on Friday. Oakdale will play at Escalon on Tuesday, March 9.