Dec 7, 2019 at 12:01 AM
Ceiba Cummings, a junior, finished with a PR time of 21:08 in the Division 4 girls race and placed 140th out of 212 runners. Wilder, a senior, placed 136th out of 210 runners in the D4 boys race with a time of 17:28.1. Teammate Elijah Higelin, also a senior, was 155th with a time of 17:52.8.
Against the best runners in the state of California, Ceiba Cummings and Jade Wilder of Yreka High School both set personal record marks at the CIF State Cross Country Championships last Saturday at Woodward Park in Fresno.
Cummings, a junior, finished with a PR time of 21:08 in the Division 4 girls race and placed 140th out of 212 runners. Wilder, a senior, placed 136th out of 210 runners in the D4 boys race with a time of 17:28.1. Teammate Elijah Higelin, also a senior, was 155th with a time of 17:52.8.
“We are happy for the way our athletes raced today to finish the season or career on a high note,” longtime YHS head coach Pam Borg said.
All three YHS runners qualified for State at the Northern Section Championships at West Valley High School in Cottonwood on Nov. 14.
Cummings did not make State last year but was the training partner teammate Jordan Linsley.
“It was an experience to appreciate and acknowledge that hard work does pay off,” Cummings said. “I was amazed that I had such a big PR, including a surprisingly fast and strong first mile split and distance PR for my two mile split.”
“We coaches were thrilled to see Ceiba race so well today,” said Borg. “She was physically and mentally ready to race to a PR.” Leading up to State, Borg said the three runners and their training partners had been doing higher elevation training to prepare for Saturday’s race conditions.
“The hills on the race course are tough but I told her to rely on her training and the hills wont be a concern,” Borg said.
She said that Ceiba ran well from that start and hit the mile mark at 6:16, which is a distance best, with her two mile split of 13:45 a distance personal best. “Overall, a well run race from start to finish,” said Borg.
Wilder ran a “smart race,” said Borg, and ran the first mile at 5:23, which was a perfect time for him.
Wilder and Higelin were close together at the two mile mark, with Jade having a time of 11:19, and Elijah passing the two mile mark at 11:19.“Jade did a great job of working the hills running them hard on the downhill and staying consistent on the uphill sections,” Borg said. “He made a strong move over the last 150 meters to pass a couple runners to finish in a PR. “
Wilder said it meant a lot to race a PR time at State after missing it last year and being a training partner for Higelin at State last season.
“I believe the main reasons for (the PR time) were because of my intensive training along with the great conditions we had at Fresno today,” Wilder said.
She added it helped that all three runners had their families there cheering them on.
“It really does help their performances,” Borg said.
Cummings thanked Borg for all the support.
“She has helped me realize so much about myself, (and) my strengths and weaknesses,” Cummings said. “It was with her encouragement and believing in my potential that I was able to push myself and achieve the goal of competing at State and running a lifetime PR.”
Three runners were selected to be training partners leading up to State this year and were at Fresno as well, including Jordan Linsley, Ben Horwitt and Nicholas Perrin.
Borg said that she and assistant coach Frank Ward are already planning for next year.
Another key goal for 2020 is to field a complete girls team after not having enough runners to field a whole team this season.