Chappel, Hoff pace Buffs’ boys XC; Sosa leads girls at El Dorado

CROSS COUNTRY: Sunday, Oct. 11, 2020

In their final tune-up for the 2020 Western Athletic Conference championship, the Garden City Buffaloes cross country teams competed Saturday, Oct. 10, at the El Dorado Invitational.

Facing many new schools and runners, the Buffs’ boys were paced by top 5 finishers Devin Chappel, who was fourth in a time of 17:15.96 over the 5k+100-meter layout, and fifth-place finisher Brody Hoff, who clocked a time of 17:16.06, just .1 of a second off his teammate.

Those two performances helped the Buffs to a third-place team finish with 88 points in the 10-team competition. Winfield and Emporia took the top two team spots with 57 and 68 points, respectively. Liberal placed fifth with 115 points. Individual winner was Treyson True of Emporia with a time of 16:23.22.

Sophomore Jocelyn Sosa continued to be the top runner for the Lady Buffs, also taking fourth place with a time of 20:55.25. The Lady Buffs scored 110 points to place fourth out of the seven teams in the field. Kelsey Bruening of Wichita-Kapaun Mt. Carmel won individually in a time of 19:56.01.

Other finishers for the Buffalo boys were Kenji Craig in 21st (18:33.94), Evan Gurrola in 23rd (18:42.05), Isaiah Casados 43rd (19:39.43) and Hayden Bailey 49th (20:25.93). There were 72 runners.

Sosa was the lone top 20 finisher for coach Krista Linenberger’s squad, with Andrea Hernandez the next best placer at 21st in a time of 23:01.36. Also running were Selah Hageman in 28th (23:34.89), Samantha Orozco in 30th (23:57.69), Abigail Aguila in 34th (24:30.98), Jocelyn Monarrez in 36th (24:50.85) and Lana Rodriguez in 41st (25:36.59).

Kapaun Mt. Carmel won the girls team division with 26 points while Emporia and Winfield took second and third with 65 and 91 points, respectively. Liberal was fifth behind the Buffs with 126 points.

“This was a competitive meet with different teams than normal, but a great opportunity for us to race hard against other good runners,” Linenberger said. “Most of our runners were right on their best marks of the season. They held on to each other better as a group in both races than the past couple weeks.”

Linenberger said the Buffs were one regular varsity boy runner down for the El Dorado meet, but hopes to get everyone healthy for the final three weeks of the season.

The boys and girls teams will compete Thursday, Oct. 15, in the Western Athletic Conference championship in Liberal. The teams will run at 4 p.m. over the Yucca Ridge Golf Course layout, which is located 8 miles north of Liberal, just off the west side of Highway 83. The boys are the defending WAC team champions while Sosa was the individual runner-up on the girls side in 2019.

Class 6A regionals are scheduled for Oct. 24 at Cessna Activities Center in Wichita, with the top 3 teams earning qualifying spots to the Oct. 31 state meet which will be held for the first time at the 4-Mile Creek Resort in Augusta. Individuals may also qualify if they finish high enough on teams that otherwise don’t qualify.

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