Fallbrook High School’s boys cross country team placed 15th among the 19 Division I teams at the CIF San Diego Section cross country meet Nov. 19 on the Morley Field course in San Diego.
Fallbrook had 361 team points, which are based on the positions of a school’s first five finishers. Granite Hills placed 14th with 349 points and Orange Glen was 16th with 436 points.
“It wasn’t as well as I thought we were going to do,” said Fallbrook head coach Marco Arias.
Fallbrook was 13th among Division II schools in last year’s race. The Warriors were in Division I for the 2013 and 2014 meets and placed 14th both years. The three previous Division I races gave Fallbrook 19th place in 2012, 16th in 2011, and ninth in 2010.
Chris Larson was Fallbrook’s first finisher this year. His time of 17:11 on the 5,000-meter (3.1-mile) course placed 28th among the 131 Division I boys. “He continually gets better,” Arias said.
Larson was 121th in the 2013 CIF race with a time of 19:08, 70th with a 18:42 performance in 2014, and 75th at the 2015 meet which took him 19:09.
The first 10 finishers in each race earned berths on the all-CIF first team and the next ten finishers were given all-CIF second team status. Arias believes that Larson’s pacing strategy deprived the senior of all-CIF recognition.
“I think he tried to save a little more,” Arias said.
“He’s just a little conservative in the way he approaches a cross-country race,” Arias said. “In track he’s more aggressive.”
Fallbrook senior Dylan Howell had a time of 18:17 for 75th place. Howell was the 28th finisher last year after completing the course in 17:58. His first CIF meet was in 2014, when his time of 19:05 placed 90th.
“We’re going to miss Chris and Dylan,” Arias said.
The only other Fallbrook runner with previous CIF meet experience, current junior David Armet, had the 78th-place time of 18:20. A time of 19:04 gave Armet 72nd place in the 2015 race.
The 86th finisher was freshman Joshua Hernandez, whose time was 18:35. The first CIF meet for senior Andrew Schlumpberger provided him 115th place and a time of 18:58. A time of 20:33 gave freshman Michael Lopez 124th place, and sophomore Angel Lopez was 125th at 20:35.
“There’s some room for improvement for next year, which is what we’re looking forward to,” Arias said.
“Everybody’s still working and trying to get better, so that was encouraging,” Arias said. “Just looking forward to developing the new guys and making a push during the next couple of years to bringing back a league title for Fallbrook.”