Only Riverbank runners and coaches could have seen this coming, though Ripon and Hughson competitors sure got the idea quick.
The Bruin girls soared past reigning champs, Ripon, with a nearly-perfect 19-point score in the first Trans-Valley League meet on Sept. 4.
The boys followed suit with a large margin of points to upset favored Hughson, accounting for a stunning collective achievement by the Bruin cross country program to start the regular season.
“It was supposed to be a close race between the Hughson boys and us, but we handled them very easily and won by nearly 20 points,” Riverbank coach Monte Wood said. “Ripon is the defending champions (girls), and we crushed them.”
Luis Figueroa (second) and Adrian Salazar (third) led the way for the boys with top-three finishes while Moises Gomez set a one-minute personal best and Diego Ruiz ran well. Jonathen Beliera and Ruben Paredez also accounted for Riverbank’s top scores.
On the girls side, Mikayla Florez was first, Haley Richardson third, Joslyn Beliera fourth, Sabrina Garcia fifth and Kimberly Ruvalcaba sixth.
The Bruins compete in Hawaii on Saturday, Sept. 21.