It’s become common for many of the area’s elite cross country runners and teams to hit the postseason racing circuit for races like the Foot Locker and Nike regional and national events.
But the Centaurus harriers are taking it a step further this fall.
Twenty-seven members of this year’s team are going to Mesa, Ariz., this weekend to compete in the Nike Cross Southwest regional meet.
While most area teams generally only send their varsity runners to such a meet, Centaurus coach Devin Rourke decided to reward his athletes’ work over the past couple of years as the Warriors have achieved previously unmatched success for the program. The CHS boys were Class 4A state champs last year and contenders again this year, while the girls have been contenders each of the last two years as well.
The seven-member CHS boys varsity squad is qualified to compete in the Nike Cross championship race on Sunday, while the rest of the CHS athletes will race in lower division heats.
The top four teams from the championship race qualify for Nike Cross Nationals in Oregon in December. But this trip is about more for the Warriors than moving on, which Rourke admits will be tough for his squad to do.
“We did a lot of fundraising over the summer, and we always had this goal in mind to be able to give as many kids this opportunity as possible,” Rourke said. “Everyone contributes to the team and helps everyone else. This is a place Centaurus has never been in (success-wise), and we wanted to give as many kids as possible the chance to go.”
AREA VB PLAYERS HEADED TO ALL-STATE GAMES
Two Broomfield athletes and one each from Centaurus, Longmont and Holy Family are competing in the Colorado Coaches of Girls Sports all-state volleyball matches on Sunday at Arvada West High School.
Broomfield’s Hanna Boyer and Kailee Van Tine, Centaurus’ Katie Wirth, and Longmont’s Cloie Cox will all play in the 4A game. Holy Family’s Sarah Weerstra will compete in the 3A game.
The day begins with the 1A match at 9 a.m., followed by 2A at 10:30, 3A at noon, 1A at 1:30 p.m. and 5A at 3.
4A, 5A FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP GAME TICKETS ON SALE
The Colorado High School Activities Association is now selling advance tickets for the Class 4A and 5A football state championship games, which will be held Dec. 1 at Sports Authority Field in Denver.
Tickets cost $9 for students and $12 for adults, with all seating general admission. They can be purchased at the Sports Authority Field box office or by calling Ticketmaster at 800-745-3000. Tickets will also be available at the stadium on the day of the game.
Follow Josh on Twitter: @JoshLindenstein