The Palo Alto boys took a run at the title in the varsity race at the Monterey Bay Invitational on Saturday at Toro Park in Salinas. The Vikings just missed while finishing second. But, it could have been much better.
Palo Alto coach Kelsey Feeley spread her considerable depth around in the various races, where sophomores Sam Craig (16:54) and Reed Foster (16:56) finished first and second over the rolling 3.0-mile course in the Frosh-Soph Division.
Had both runners competed in the varsity race, Palo Alto would have taken that title. Instead, Willow Glen won with 66 points with the Vikings second with 81. Menlo-Atherton was 10th with 302.
Palo Alto junior Kent Slaney was the top local finisher, finishing third in 15:37 behind SCVAL rivals Justin Robison of Lynbrook (15:24) and Ben Zaeske of Los Altos (15:36). Paly junior Naveen Pai was seventh in 16:23. M-A was led by sophomore Andrew Salinas, who finished 36th in 17:16.
In the girls' varsity race, Menlo-Atherton finished second with 78 points with Palo Alto taking fourth with 150. Aptos won the team crown with 31 points.
M-A senior Annalisa Crowe, who won the PAL Meet No. 2 individual title earlier in the week, followed that up with a seventh-place finish of 19:05 to pace the Bears. Teammate Madeleine Baier was 12th (19:49) and fellow M-A senior Cat DePuy took 14th (19:55).
Palo Alto was led by Julia Doubson's 20:16 for 17th.
It was a good day for Palo Alto overall, with the frosh-soph girls finishing first, the frosh-soph boys taking second, the JV girls running third and the JV boys taking fourth.
Menlo-Atherton came away from the Stockton Tournament with a 1-3 record on Saturday following a win over Albany (25-20, 25-22) and losses to Oak Ridge (25-15, 25-23), St. Mary's (25-21, 24-26, 15-10) and Presentation (25-18, 25-17).
In the lone victory, junior Eliza Grover had 10 kills for the Bears (15-6) with junior Kirby Knapp dishing out 25 assists. Juniors Alexa Roumeliotis and Kiana Sales had 17 and 15 digs, respectively.
At the Mountain View/Los Altos Tournament, Castilleja (7-17) finished 0-3 following losses to Del Mar (25-15, 25-22), Hillsdale (25-12, 25-4) and Alvarez (23-25, 25-20, 15-11).
Boys water polo
Menlo School dropped an 11-9 overtime match to host Campolindo in nonleague action Saturday in Moraga.
Freshman Sam Untrecht led the Knights (9-8) with four goals with senior Chris Xi adding three. Menlo junior goalie Tiago Bonchristiano came up with a career-high 23 saves.
"Both teams were so evenly matched," said Menlo senior co-captain Wells Costello. "We countered well against a good, fast team and it showed us that, again, we can play with the best. The loss is frustrating, of course, but we just did so many things well that, at this level, we also have to fee good about that."
Girls water polo
Sacred Heart Prep wrapped up an undefeated weekend in its own SHP Invitational by defeating both Monte Vista-Danville (7-6) and St. Francis-Sacramento (7-5) on Saturday in Atherton.
Addi Duvall led the win over Monte Vista with three goals. Against St. Francis, Juniors Maddy Johnston and Maddie Pendolino tallied two goals, as did senior Malaika Koshy.
"With the postseason only two weeks away, it's important that we're playing good water polo right now," said SHP coach John Burke, whose team improved to 14-4. "The second half of October is definitely a part of the regular season that we focus on because it gives us the opportunity to evaluate what is and is not working, and based on some of those evaluations, choose what we want to bring into the playoffs or not.
"At this point in the year we have a pretty strong foundation of what we call 'base' concepts in place and getting good competition this week and later on in the month (NorCal's) is the ideal way for us to run some of this stuff against really strong teams. It worked well for us last week and we had some solid wins against good teams. We like where we are but are very honest with ourselves in terms of knowing we need to be even better to win WCAL's and of course CCS. That is 100 percent what we are focused on."