Sprinting on to a state meet finish

By: Aaron Jackson for The News Messenger
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The Lincoln High cross-country team had four runners make it into the CIF Sac-Joaquin Section Division II meet Friday at Willow Hill Reservoir in Folsom. The four runners were John Hoang, Preston Summerhays, Saedy Williamson and Destiny Everett. All four qualified for the section finals by running the Sac Joaquin Section Division II race in Angels Camp Nov. 4.

Hoang placed 26th out of 50 runners for the freshmen, posting a time of 13 minutes, 6 seconds for the 2.1-mile race. The freshman performed so well in the first Pioneer Valley League meet of the season that he ran varsity four meets in a row, including the final two league meets.

Summerhays placed 26th out of 80 runners for boys varsity, posting a time of 17:10 for the 3.04-mile race. The senior finished in the top 10 in all league meets, giving him all-league honors for the second year in a row.

“The course was tough, but I gave it everything I had,” Summerhays said. “It was a great season and an amazing four years of running cross-country. I’m definitely going to miss it.”

Both Summerhays and Hoang have raced at Willow Hill before and both achieved personal records at sections. Summerhays beat his previous best by more than a minute and Hoang beat his previous best by 79 seconds.

Williamson was 33rd out of 80 runners for girls varsity, posting a time of 21:01. She beat her personal best by 1:39.

The junior earned PVL All-League honors after placing fifth in the final league meet.

“I had a lot of motivation to keep working hard to reach my goals all season. I never thought I could make sections as an individual so I was pretty excited to run with all those amazing athletes,” Williamson said. “I’m looking forward to improving and setting new goals to make it my best season next year.”

Everett came in eighth out of 80 runners for varsity, clocking a time of 19:29. She reset her personal best by three seconds, as well as qualifying for the state championships in Fresno Nov. 25. She will be the first Fighting Zebra to run in the state meet in eight years.

Lincoln coach Nancy Hoppe said 2017 was a huge success.

“I saw a continuous stream of PR’s, with great growth in team running and bonding. With our varsity girls coming so close to making sections as a team and Destiny making state, it is a very empowering way to end the season and I look forward to 2018,” said Hoppe.

It was an amazing season for Zebras’ cross-country. Everett continued her climb as an outstanding distance runner and the junior can now add state to her many accomplishments.