Julia Thomas

Julia Thomas practices at Laughlin Junior Senior High School.

BOULDER CITY — The Cougar cross country team ended the season with a bang, leaving their mark for next season.

“State went very well,” said coach Mitch Mulcahy emphatically. “I’m very pleased with this year’s team.”

For the girls, Maritza Cruz finished seventh out of 45 runners and with a time of 23:26.9. She cut off 40 seconds from her time, said Mulcahy. Julia Thomas cut off 50 seconds from her time and finished 15th with a time of 25:02.3. Nancy Franco finished 33rd with a time of 28:35.8.

Emily McNeely, of Sierra Lutheran, won the race with a time of 20:48.7.

Gonzalo Sanchez led the boys with a sixth place finish and a time of 18:09.6. His performance earned him a spot to run in the Nike SW Regional Meet in Casa Grande, Arizona on Nov. 17, Mulcahy said.

“In all the classes in the entire state he finished 65th out of 188 runners,” said Mulcahy. “This is the first time in six years a Laughlin runner has earned a medal in the state meet.”

Jason Zenefski finished 33rd with a time of 20:30.1.

Jared Marchegger, of Sierra Lutheran, won with a time of 16:51.5.

“It’s scary coming into the season knowing we had more people graduate last year and are on the team this year,” said Mulcahy recapping the season. 

Ultimately, it didn’t matter how many they had on their team because they can only send seven to state anyway, he added.

Maxing out the number of kids who could go is exactly what Laughlin did this year, said Mulcahy. Everyone who ran, made it to state.

But with all the accolades, the accomplishments and cutting of times, it was none of those things that make Mulcahy beam with pride.

“It wasn’t their state or regional performance I was most pleased with,” said Mulcahy. “(It was) their daily dedication and commitment to getting better. This is a very disciplined group that made my job easy.”

The group will be honored, along with the other fall athletes at the annual fall banquet. It is set for 5:30 p.m. PST Wednesday, Nov. 14. They will be in the multipurpose room at Laughlin Junior Senior High School, 1900 Cougar Drive.

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