AURORA | Smoky Hill maintained its grip on the individual titles at the Aurora City Cross Country Championships, but Grandview had a historic day Thursday at the meet’s 32nd running.
Bolstered by the 2nd and 3rd place finishes of junior Erin Norton and senior Brooke Genovese, the Wolves won the girls championship for the first time in school history, coasting past Smoky Hill and individual winner Rachael Chacko at the Aurora Sports Park. Nicole Mundy (6th) and Melanie Jenkins (7th) also earned their way onto the all-city team for Grandview.
The girls victory and the second-place finish of the boys team was enough to deliver the first combined Aurora city championship for Grandview as well. The Wolves finished with a combined total of 76 points, putting them 18 points in front of Smoky Hill, which had won the title the past three years and 23 times total since the meet started in 1981.
Grandview’s boys were led by the second-place finish of Nick Horton, who ran behind the Smoky Hill duo of Charlie Kleeman and Dan Kasberg for most of the race before surging past Kasberg just before the finish line to finish in 16 minutes, 49 seconds. Kevin Noto (7th) joined Horton on the all-city team.
Kleeman extended the individual tradition for Smoky Hill in the boys race, succeeding graduated two-time champion Kyle Ames with a time of 16:44. Kasberg was third in 16:50, while Blake Yount (4th) gave the Buffaloes three members of the all-city team and helped them to a championship-winning team score of 29 points.
Smoky Hill won the boys team championship for the eighth time in the past decade and 11th time since 1998.
Regis Jesuit Frank Morton (5th) and Cherokee Trail’s Johnny Droege (6th) also got into the top seven.
Chacko became the first new Aurora city champion in the girls race since 2008, as Rangeview graduate Rikki Gonzales had won the last three titles.
With Gonzales out of the equation, Chacko passed the fast-starting Norton just prior to the 1-mile mark and never looked back, coming home in a smoking time of 18:22.
Norton — who beat Chacko a week earlier at the pre-state meet in Colorado Springs — was next in 18:57, followed by Genovese, who made it onto the all-city team for the fourth time in her career with a time of 19:43.
Eaglecrest’s Alicia Taurchini (4th), Smoky Hill’s Chloe Andrie (5th), Mundy and Jenkins rounded out the all-city team.
NOTES: Grandview is just the fifth Aurora team other than Smoky Hill to win the combined Aurora city championship, joining Aurora Central (1983), Rangeview (1986, 1989, 1990), Eaglecrest (2001) and Regis Jesuit (2008).
Reach Sports Editor Courtney Oakes at firstname.lastname@example.org or 303-750-7555
32ND AURORA CITY CROSS COUNTRY CHAMPIONSHIPS
Thursday at Aurora Sports Park
Combined Team Scores: 1. Grandview 76; 2. Smoky Hill 94; 3. Regis Jesuit 181; 4. Cherokee Trail 200; 5. Eaglecrest 213; 6. Rangeview 313; 7. Hinkley 320; 8. Vista PEAK 525
Boys Team Scores: 1. Smoky Hill 29 (Charlie Kleeman, Dan Kasberg, Blake Yount, Cody Miller, Ryan Parker, Michael Andress, Michael Anthony); 2. Grandview 44 (Nick Horton, Kevin Noto, David Oberndorf, Keenan O’Brien, Jeff Southern, Mick Norton, Grayson Abele); 3. Cherokee Trail 107 (Johnny Droege, Mitchell Stieg, Duncan Barnhill, Nate Thomas, Austin Weeks, Gabe Sidwell, Dominick Fiddelke); 4. Regis Jesuit 107 (Frank Morton, Sean Morton, John O’Hagan, Champ Martinez, Jack Puhr, Nick Gervasini, Chandler Cochran); 5. Eaglecrest 121 (Luke Meachem, Kyle Hampe, Steven Tibbits, Tyler Ingals, Mitch Haug, Cameron Dwyer, Connor Shonka); 6. Rangeview (Cameron Kimpson, Ramadan Mohammed, Willy Witt, Colton Lee, Jason Homstad, Dave Nuttall, Alan Almeida); 7. Hinkley 162 (Oscar Briones Ruiz, Jesus Pena Cruz, Francisco Aguilar, Gabe Guzman, Goliath Hernandez, Phoenix Camacho, Ian Stevenson); 8. Aurora Central 244 (Dan Valdez, Victor Mendez, Shakir Mohamed, Jake Henderson, Diego Aguilar); 9. Vista PEAK 264 (Jesus Casillas, Damian Florez, Ryan Seals, Hunter Vidal, Javonte Washington, Christian Canaday, Jonathan Harrison)
Girls Team Scores: 1. Grandview 32 (Erin Norton, Brooke Genovese, Nicole Mundy, Melanie Jenkins, Sylvana Ross, Rachel Shaw, Kayla Vallin); 2. Smoky Hill 65 (Rachael Chacko, Chloe Andrie, Brynell Yount, Emily Combs, Maddie Munns, Jamie Jezier, Malika Sengsavath); 3. Regis Jesuit 74 (Brooke Barlock, Hannah Feehan, Lindsey Koch, Fiona Murphy, Jen Steyaeart, Meredith Hoggatt, Rachel Oakes); 4. Eaglecrest 92 (Alicia Taurchini, Hillary Peterson, Tara Vigil, Ashley Windom, Janine Taurchini, Jordanne Stobbs-Vergara, Jamie Stoner); 5. Cherokee Trail 93 (Savanah Nesvold, Amy McConnell, Maria Redman, Lynsie Roper, Mikayla Redman, Caroline Kvietok, Megan McCarthy); 6. Hinkley 158 (Elssa Teame, Mary Teame, Estephania Aceves, Victoria McKernan, Victoria Ramirez Solis, Lesly Martin Del Campo, Yanoudji Diarra); 7. Rangeview 174 (Sandra Tran, Megan Shanahan, Morgan Bloyer, Rachel Nuttall, Miriah Hendrix, Hope Barajas, Nieisha Chavez); 8. Vista PEAK 261 (Blanca Mendiola, Lillia Chavez, Imelda Chavez, Maria Hernandez, Karla Rosas); 9. Gateway 274 (Desiree Spillman, Deborah Dorny, Erlinda Cruz, Katya Espinoza, Ashlee Eldredge, Lasette Willis, Nia Alvarez)
Boys Individuals (top 7 first team all-city): 1. Charlie Kleeman (Smoky Hill), 16 minutes, 44 seconds; 2. Nick Horton (Grandview), 16:49; 3. Dan Kasberg (Smoky Hill), 16:50; 4. Blake Yount (Smoky Hill), 17:14; 5. Frank Morton (Regis Jesuit), 17:20; 6. Johnny Droege (Cherokee Trail), 17:21; 7. Kevin Noto (Grandview), 17:21; (Second team all-city, 8-14): 8. David Oberndorf (Grandview), 17:28; 9. Sean Morton (Regis Jesuit), 17:32; 10. Cody Miller (Smoky Hill), 17:33; 11. Devunderick Walker (Gateway), 17:34; 12. Ryan Parker (Smoky Hill), 17:41; 13. Keenan O’Brien (Grandview), 17:50; 14. Luke Meachem (Eaglecrest), 17:53
Girls Individuals (top 7 first team all-city): 1. Rachael Chacko (Smoky Hill), 18 minutes, 22 seconds: 2. Erin Norton (Grandview), 18:57; 3. Brooke Genovese (Grandview), 19:43; 4. Alicia Taurchini (Eaglecrest), 19:56; 5. Chloe Andrie (Smoky Hill), 20:02; 6. Nicole Mundy (Grandview), 20:21; 7. Melanie Jenkins (Grandview), 20:26; (Second team all-city, 8-14): 8. Savanah Nesvold (Cherokee Trail), 20:46; 9. Amy McConnell (Cherokee Trail), 20:51; 10. Brooke Barlock (Regis Jesuit), 20:53; 11. Hannah Feehan (Regis Jesuit), 20:53; 12. Brynell Yount (Smoky Hill), 21:09; 13. Lindsey Koch (Regis Jesuit), 21:19; 14. Sylvana Ross (Grandview), 21:25