The members of Central Valley High School's cross country program made the return trip to Angels Camp on Nov. 8.
Ben Saldana, Anthony Carrillo, Gurpal Samra, Marissa Martinez, Daisy Ochoa and Jasmin Diaz represented the Hawks at the Sac-Joaquin Sub-Section Meet.
"That's not the first time we've competed there," Hawks head coach Veronica Moreno said. "We went to Frogtown earlier this season for the Bret Harte Invitational. It's a pretty rigorous course. The heat and hills are the challenging parts. It's like running in the desert. We trained for it. The majority of our kids improved their times. It was a good end to the season."
Saldana, Carrillo and Samra led Central Valley's boys team.
Ben placed 97th with a time of 19 minutes, 27 seconds on the 3-mile course in the Division-II race.
Anthony (21:56) and Gurpal (31:22) took 146th and 169th, respectively.
The competition featured 170 runners.
Saldana, who missed a large portion of the season with a leg injury, concluded his cross country career with the Hawks.
"He was in a good mood after the race," Moreno said. "He was happy to be out there. That's his personality. He has a dedication and passion for running. That's what motivated him. Quitting wasn't an option. If it wasn't for the injury, he would have come pretty close to qualifying for sections because he's really fast. He has track coming up. Hopefully, he'll be ready to run at his normal speed."
Central Valley's girls squad had three competitors, including Martinez (123rd, 27:29), Ochoa (140th, 29:14) and Diaz (143rd, 29:19).
"We had a full team at the beginning of the year," Moreno said. "These three girls stuck it out. They ran their hearts out."
Ceres High's boys team finished 23rd overall during the Division-III competition.
Efren Ramirez (106th, 20:36) paced the Bulldogs.
Manuel Baez (109th, 20:43), Adalberto Rodriguez (137th, 22:57), Angel Macias (141st, 23:33) and Isaac Soto (152nd, 24:37) also represented Ceres High.
Lacey Oliveira (80th, 25:53), Haleigh Leazer (88th, 25:54), Jennifer Cisneros (94th, 26:31) and Miranda Vasquez (133rd, 37:29) posted times for Ceres High's girls squad.