Battle Mountain girls XC bests the best at Dave Sanders |

Battle Mountain girls XC bests the best at Dave Sanders

Battle Mountain girls cross-country celebrates with a big trophy after beating 21 other 5A schools in the Division I race of the Dave Sanders Invitational on Friday in Littleton.
Special to the Daily |

Dave Sanders Invitational


12. Rychelle Denardo, 20:22

21. Megan Rossman, 20:44

24. Elizabeth Constien, 20:52

26. Alex Raichart, 20:54

34. Kayla Fahrney, 21:06

36. Hannah Gaylord, 21:11

39. Lizzy Hardin, 21:12


19. Alexis Aguirre, 17:08

33. Ethan Pence, 17:25

48. Jake Borel, 17:51

52. Franklin Reilly, 17:58

60. Isaac Sotelo, 18:06

62. Nathaniel Badger, 18:07

67. James Moran, 18:13

LITTLETON — Not bad for a little 4A school.

Battle Mountain girls cross-country went to Littleton and Columbine High School and won Division I of the Dave Sanders Invitational on Friday.

There were 22 teams in the elite race, and 21 of them were 5A schools. Wanna take a guess at who was the 4A school?

Battle Mountain edged Mountain Vista, 117-119, for the win with other state powers Smoky Hill (131), Dakota Ridge (172) and Horizon (173) in tow.

And, by the way, the Battle Mountain boys finished sixth.

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Presumably, the team will keep its new uniforms, just as long as assistant coach Jonny Stevens keeps reminding head coach Rob Parish that his teams are in black now.

“It always takes me a few races,” Parish joked about the uniforms.

Fun with stats

As for the race, well, that was pretty good.

On a bigger level, are the Huskies ladies in a position to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the school’s only girls cross-country championship with state ambitions of their own?

“We haven’t talked much about it. Ten years ago, these girls were 5,” Parish joked. “Something we’ve learned over the years is to compare each team to itself. However, this is an outstanding result.”

The telling stat of the meet was the 1-10 differential for the Huskies. Each school sent out 10 and scored five. The 1-10 differential is the time between a team’s first and 10th runners. In Battle Mountain’s case it was 1 minute, 26 seconds between Rychelle Denardo in 12th and Naomi Harding in 66th.

To put this in perspective, the Huskies’ 1-10 split was better than all but three squads’ 1-5 splits. Dakota Ridge, in fourth place, had 1:48 between its first and fifth runners.

This is a statement of Battle Mountain’s depth and an indication of the competition that will be happening in the next month or so as the Huskies figure out who will be running during the postseason.

In the meantime, fast and steady wins the race as far as the big picture.

“We need to stay healthy,” Parish said. “They need to stay focused on the task and hand, and not get concerned with the pecking order. We’re five races in and we haven’t had one consistent order yet. We need to stay focused as we develop speed. We’re going to be cautious as we start to mix up the formula.”

Don’t forget

With what the ladies did, please don’t skip over the gents. They were sixth in Division I on Friday, which is huge story in its own right.

The guys had four runners in the 17-minute range (Alexis Aguirre, Ethan Pence, Jake Borel and Franklin Reilly) on a not-too-fast course during the last weekend of September.

Parish also had big post-race props for James Moran in 67th.

Battle Mountain’s younger runners will likely head to Dakota Ridge on Wednesday, while the main crew is off to Castle View next weekend.

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