Perhaps not yet fully recovered from an injured Achilles tendon, Sloan Mazur still managed quite an effort last weekend in Alamosa on a cross-country route tailor-made for speed, speed, speed.
Competing against standouts from all CHSAA classifications, the Bayfield senior's final placing of 40th wasn't what ultimately mattered. His improved 17-minute, 36.23-second time was, as it was less than 14 seconds behind team leader, sophomore Elco Garcia, Jr., who clocked 17:22.45 and took 30th.
Jonas Nanaeto again crossed the finish line as the Wolverines' No. 3, stopping the timer at 18:00.24 and placing 60th out of 229 finishers. One minute, 40.48 seconds later, Nathan Carlson came home in 120th with James Chenowith (19:45.50) only five spots behind.
With non-scoring runners at the 2017 Joe I. Vigil Open factored out, BHS' top five totaled a very 'Colorado-y' 303 points and placed 11th in the team standings. Led by individual winner Connor Ohlson (15:26.72), 5A Littleton Dakota Ridge logged a winning meet-low score of 27, with 4A Durango (46), 3A Alamosa (116), 3A Salida (135) and 3A Lamar (140) following in the order.
Also running at Cattails Golf Course for Bayfield, Rylan Ross finished 136th in 20:10.33, and Ethan Cook was 146th in 20:37.70, nearly making for a sub-20 showing for the full squad.
With no JV races held at this year's Open, Bayfield's girls, like the boys, had no choice but compete in the super-sized varsity division. Out of 219 finishers, Olivia Keitz was tops for BHS with her 148th-place 25:38.95. Sarah Ruybal wasn't too far behind, taking 159th in 26:18.65, and Mylee Sanders was 203rd in 30:00.98.
With an impressive low point count of 22 for its top five, 4A Durango easily earned the team title over Dakota Ridge (69) and Alamosa (86), with Salida (119) and 4A Taos, N.M. (125), filling out the top five.
Dakota Ridge's Michelle Renner was the only entrant to break 19 minutes, clocking an 18:56.21. She earned the individual win over DHS' Madeline Burns (19:05.35), Kiara Hamlin (19:20.08), Anna Smagacz (19:21.86) and Ruth Holcomb (19:23.23).
BHS will next compete Friday under the lights of Hillcrest Golf Course in Durango, co-hosting (with the Demons) the third annual Southwest Sunset XC Classic. Events begin at 6 p.m. with the middle-school girls' race, with the mid-school boys heading out at 6:30.
JV girls and boys will then begin at 7 and 7:30 p.m., respectively, and after the Classic's Community 5K at 8 p.m., the high-school varsity girls are slated to start at 8:30 with varsity boys following at 9 p.m.
WANT IN ON IT? Individuals interested in entering the Community 5K can still sign up Friday for a race-day $30 fee, while teams of seven or more (with the top five scoring) can get in for a race-day $200. More information is at www.durangodemonsxc.com