FitzGerald, Virtue, Burroughs boys claim wins at Pacific League meet

ARCADIA — Though there was quite a bit of competition at Thursday's second Pacific League cross-country meet at Arcadia County Park, results didn't change up top.

As expected, the CIF Southern Section Division I third-ranked Burroughs boys, along with the Division I second-ranked Arcadia girls held onto their grip in league, while Crescenta Valley's Colin FitzGerald and Burroughs' Emily Virtue took home wins again.

While the scene shifted from Crescenta Valley Park to Arcadia, the Burroughs boys held off a strong challenge from No. 10 Arcadia, 25-31, using the league's dual-meet scoring. Overall, Burroughs finished 7-0.

"I felt the team dynamic went well today," Burroughs junior Alexander Hirsch said. "We definitely worked well to have the runners that we could get up to have strong places for the finish."

Hirsch battled FitzGerald for most of the race before finishing second in 14 minutes, 44 seconds. Hirsch was one of four Indians to finish in the top 10 with teammates Jagdeep Chahal (fourth, 14:49.7), Timothy Wells (fifth, 14:49.9) and Jacob Calderon (seventh, 15:05.4) all finishing close behind.

Burroughs' Andrew Hoxsie was his team's final scorer, taking 17th in 15:34.2.

FitzGerald took home win No. 2 in league this season with a personal-best mark of 14:41.3 and appreciated the competition from Hirsch.

"It's fun to battle the guys," said FitzGerald, whose previous best was 14:44. "This is what pushes you to be better and do your best to come out on top."

Crescenta Valley clinched third overall by finishing 5-2. The Falcons lost, 21-37, to rival Arcadia, but defeated Burbank, 20-40.

The Falcons remaining four scorers of Manan Vats (10th, 15:11.2), Artin Allahverdian (13th, 15:22.7), Spencer Geck (18th, 15:36) and Matt Brunner (20th, 15:47.6) all finished in the top 20.

Seniors Angel Flores (11th, 15:13.8) and Elijah Parrott (15th, 15:26.5) led fourth-place Burbank, which finished 4-3, but fell to the rival Indians, 17-41.

Glendale took fifth, finished 3-4 and topped Hoover, 20-38, with junior Albert Hernandez (28th, 16:58.5) leading the way.

Hoover's Chris Chereque (27th, 16:57.1) was his team's top placer.

On the girls' side, Virtue won her fifth straight league meet in a time of 17:15.8 and held off a strong challenge from runner-up Cindy Liang (17:26.9) of Arcadia.

"I was just kind of going for a time of 17:15, which is what I got," said Virtue, whose personal record is 16:42. "That was my main goal and it was nice to have the Arcadia girls pushing me."

Arcadia owned the top 10, as the Apaches crossed their seven through the first nine spots to go 6-0 (Muir did not field a team) with the closest score a 20-43 win over Burroughs.

Burbank had a pair of runners squeeze into the top 10, with Gabby Collins (17:56.3) passing up Arcadia's Tori Rodriguez (fifth, 17:56.8) for fourth place over the final 10 meters.

"I'm a senior this year and I knew this was my last time on this course," Collins said. "I just felt like I wanted to do something proud on this course and catch someone at the end."

Senior Kira Bochard finished 10th (18:34.7) for Burbank, whose three remaining scorers were Noemi Apreza (12th, 19:09.2), Sol Fernandez (13th, 19:10.5) and Jamie Giammichele (20th, 19:44.7).

The Bulldogs finished second at 5-1 and defeated Crescenta Valley, 22-33, and Burroughs, 20-40.

The Falcons finished, 4-2, and held off Burroughs, 20-37, for third place.

Crescenta Valley was led by sophomore Melissa Owens (11th, 19:02.7), while the rest of the team packed pretty well with Sophia Atin (14th, 19:25.9), Gabriela Borraez (17th, 19:31.4), Sojeong Kang (18th, 19:35.6) and Persiyana Petrova (19th, 19:37.2) keeping within 15 seconds of each other.

Burroughs was 3-3, took fourth, but had no runners outside of Virtue finish in the top 20.

Glendale picked up two victories, including a 21-34 victory over Hoover, and was led by sophomore Vanneza Venzor (16th, 19:29.5).

While Hoover only picked up one win over Pasadena, it was still a historic day for Gabriela Quinones, who placed 15th in 19:28.8.

The mark was the best for a freshman at Arcadia County Park in Hoover history, beating the time of 19:37 set in 1997 by arguably the greatest Hoover runner, Anita Siraki.

"I set the goal for myself and I started to notice that I was beating the times I had to set for myself by the first two miles," Quinones said. "I was going faster and faster and I knew I could get it."