Cross country: El Molino’s Brian Schulz pulls away early to win meet against Analy

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During Wednesday’s dual cross country meet at Ragle Park in Sebastopol, Analy’s Emma Douch set a course record and El Molino’s Brian Schulz showed he’s the best long-distance runner in the SCL.

Douch shaved a second off the old course mark when she completed the 2.65-mile layout in 16:37. Meanwhile, Schulz ran the distance in 14:26 and was so far in front at the finish, the rest of the field was out of sight.

Schulz, who owns the boys record at Ragle with a time of 13:56, took the lead soon after the start and kept widening on the competition.

“I felt good and was comfortable,” the junior said. “I didn’t need to go all out.”

Schulz likely has Nov. 28 circled on his calendar. That’s the day of the CIF State Tournament in Fresno. He hopes to qualify for the third year in a row.

“It would be cool to medal at state,” he said. “That’s one of my goals. I wasn’t happy with the way I ran there the last two years.”

In order to be better prepared, Schulz has changed his training regimen.

“I’m running the 800 more in my practices,” he said. “I want to have a better closing kick in my races, especially NCS and the state meet.”

Running is in Schulz’s blood. His father, Hal, competed for Cal.

“Brian has a really good work ethic and genetics,” his coach Heather Rosales said. “That’s a winning combination.”

Douch, winner of the girls race, thought she had a good chance to break the course record.

“It had been on my mind all day,” the junior said. “I thought I could do it.”

Douch was more than two minutes ahead of her nearest competitor as she approached the finish line.

The course record was definitely on her mind at that point.

“I sprinted the final 300 meters because I thought I was close to the record. Luckily, I just made it.”

Douch started taking long distance running seriously her freshman year at Analy.

“I like to push myself,” she said. “I enjoy being out of my comfort zone.”

NBL CENTER MEET NO. 2

At Spring Lake, Santa Rosa runners Daniel Pride and Delaney White finished first in their races.

Maria Carrillo won both team events. The Pumas boys squad nipped Santa Rosa 36-37, while the Panthers also finished second in the girls competition, with Maria Carrillo getting the edge 48-30.

Pride covered the 2.97 course in 15:32. His teammate, Luca Mazzanti, finished second in 15:57.

Rounding out the top five were Ukiah’s Robert Swoboda (16:17) and Maria Carrillo’s duo of Ben Lawson (16:29) and Scott Kruetzfeldt (16:30).

In the girls race, White stopped the clock in 17:49. That was 30 seconds faster than runner-up Adria Barich of Casa Grande.

Cardinal Newman’s Kasey Braun (18:48) finished third. She was followed by Carrillo teammates Sydney Rivas (18:53) and Allie Ahern (18:58).

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