ROUNDUP : Sunny Hills’ Garritson Sets Invitational Record
Carrie Garritson of Sunny Hills didn’t find the competition she hoped for Saturday at the Laguna Hills Cross-Country Invitational.
But Garritson didn’t let that stop her: She broke the sophomore girls’ course record and won the Division II sophomore race in 16 minutes 53 seconds on the three-mile course at Laguna Hills High School.
Garritson’s time was not the fastest of the day. Fallbrook’s Milena Glusac, who held the previous sophomore record of 17:15, won the Division I junior/senior race in 16:49, breaking the meet record for girls.
Glusac, a junior who finished third in last year’s Division II state meet, said she felt no ill effects from a bout of stomach flu she had Friday.
“It must have been the 24-hour flu, but I felt a lot better during the first two miles of the race, and I was feeling real good at the finish,” she said.
Glusac, whose race started after Garritson’s, said she saw Garritson start but couldn’t watch the entire race because she was warming up.
Garritson, who won the Division III state title last season, said she thought she could have run faster Saturday if she had been pushed. She won by 2:10.
“I was hoping to do 16:40,” Garritson said, “but I thought I could do 16:30 if someone was there with me. It’s kind of hard with no competition.”
Garritson, who began running at age 6, said she is hoping to run well at the Kinney Cross-Country Nationals in December at San Diego.
“I was injured two summers in a row,” said Garritson, who suffered from a bone growth disease in her knees last summer.
Edison’s Shelley Taylor, second at the Division II state meet in 1990, turned in the meet’s third-best time, winning the Division II junior/senior race in 17:09.
The Santa Ana Valley boys’ team was second behind Peninsula High, a new school in Palos Verdes, in the Division I senior race, 63-67. Santa Ana Valley’s Lucio Brito won the individual title in 15:35.
“We’re just picking a couple of invitationals to race in this season,” said Santa Ana Valley Coach George Payan, whose team barely missed qualifying for the state meet last year. “We don’t kill everybody at the beginning of the season, we kind of reel them in at the end.”