By Zach Cavanagh
Boys Cross Country Finishes 7th at Nationals
A historic season for the boys cross country program wrapped up with a strong result on Dec. 3.
The Tritons placed four runners in the top 100 to earn a seventh-place team finish at the Nike Cross Nationals in Portland, Oregon. Coming off their first CIF-SS championship and a runner-up finish at state, San Clemente finished in the top one-third of the national field.
Rory Catsimanes, a senior, led the Tritons with a 50th-place finish at 15:49, and senior Juan Chantaca came in 64th at 15:55. Juniors Brett Ephraim (16:04), Pierce Clark (16:16) and Taj Clarck (16:29) rounded out the San Clemente scorers in 87th, 100th and 126th, respectively.
Senior Grant Sestak finished in 127th (16:30), and sophomore Dallin Harrington (16:41) rounded out the Triton contingent in Portland.
Wrestling Places 3 in Carlsbad, Hosts Rotary Classic
It was a busy and productive weekend for the San Clemente wrestling program.
The Tritons got their best result from the five-wrestler contingent sent to the Hamada Invitational at La Costa Canyon High School in Carlsbad. Cole Robertson, a senior, brought home the lone gold medal for San Clemente on the weekend with a first-place finish at 220 pounds.
Seniors Benjamin Hernandez (138 pounds) and Dominic Morales (152 pounds) collected a third- and fifth-place finish, respectively, at the Invitational. San Clemente finished 14th as a team.
Back home in San Clemente, the Tritons hosted the 48th annual Rotary Classic.
The Tritons finished fourth as a team with eight podium finishers.
Adam Wronski at 132 pounds, Jakan Rancourt at 138 pounds and John Bobo at 152 pounds each earned second-place finishes. Pierce Woodworth at 106 pounds, Thiago Pereira at 145 pounds, Luca Rosamill at 152 pounds and Max Bolinger and Tony Cappello at 182 pounds all took home third-place finishes.
The San Clemente boys and girls wrestling teams each traveled to El Toro for a dual meet on Tuesday, Dec. 13.
Girls Basketball Storms Through Troy Classic
The strong start to the season rolled on for the San Clemente girls basketball team last week.
After dropping their opener in the Troy Classic to Orange Lutheran, the Tritons won their next three games to push out to a 7-3 record on the season.
San Clemente defeated Oak Park, 51-34, and followed up with a comeback win over Moreno Valley, 49-45. The Tritons trailed Moreno Valley by 18 points in the third quarter, but 10 fourth-quarter points by Kiley Quillin helped San Clemente rally for the victory. Quillin scored 16 points, and Claire Pham led with 21 points.
Pham led the Tritons again with 19 points in a 57-48 win over Long Beach Poly to close out the Troy Classic. Pham, Quillin and Kyle Franklin were named to the all-tournament team.
San Clemente continued against Cerritos in the Segerstrom Classic on Wednesday, Dec. 14, but results were not available at press time. The Tritons play Canyon in the tournament on Thursday, Dec. 15.
Zach Cavanagh is the sports editor for Picket Fence Media. Zach is a California Journalism Award winner and has covered sports in Orange County since 2013. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram @ZachCav and follow our sports coverage on Twitter @SouthOCSports. Email at firstname.lastname@example.org.