Coast Union’s Paul Butterfield set the pace for the Broncos at the Morro Bay Invitational cross country competition Saturday, Sept. 12. Butterfield placed fourth in a field of about 200 junior varsity boys from around the state, with a time of 18 minutes, 40 seconds.
Nick Roper (22:53) placed 62nd in the boys JV field; Will Stephenson (24:44) came in 88th, and David Nolan (24:48) came in just behind Stephenson, placing 89th in that field.
Gigi Stoothoff placed 19th in a field of about 200 runners in the girls JV competition with a time of 23:47. Bella Raethke (25:53) came in 64th in that field; Jazmin Kelleher (26:14) came in 72nd; Vanessa Ramirez (27:05) placed 94th; and Iveth De Jesus (32:40) came in 161st.
In the boys novice category for first-time runners — also featuring about 200 competitors — Ethan Walters (21:45) placed 96th; David May (23:40) came in 118th; Tyler Seng (25:57) placed 174th; Nic Robertson was the 181st finisher with a time of 27:51; and Caesar Hernandez (29:04) finished 189th.
Co-coach Jim Hurley noted that Butterfield improved from 17th last year to fourth this year, “so he showed improvement there.”
Hurley called the race “kind of brutal” because part of the course is in soft sand and “a little intimidating” because his athletes were competing in a pack of 200 runners.
The next competition for the cross country team is a home meet against Santa Maria set for 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 23.