Pojoaque Performs At State, Hall Earns All-State Honors

by Editor / Nov 14, 2018 / 0 comments

The Pojoaque boys team (in green) at the start of the Class 4A boys cross country state championship race. The Elks finished seventh 9photo by Chris Roybal).

Pojoaque Performs At State, Hall Earns All-State Honors

By George Morse Sports and Outdoors

The Pojoaque Valley High School boys cross country team finished a respectable seventh at the Class 4A State cross country meet Nov. 10 at Rio Rancho High School. Pojoaque was competing for the first time in Class 4A since being bumped up from Class 3A after reclassification by the New Mexico Activities Association. The Elks were led by senior John Hall, who earned All-State honors with an eighth-place finish in a time of 16 minutes, 41.80 seconds.Hall had finished fifth at the 2017 Class 3A state cross country meet, also earning All-State honors then. His goal was to earn All-State honors again this year despite having to face more competition in a higher class against a larger field of runners. He achieved it.

‘I took off fast for the first 400 yards,” Hall said. “I didn’t want to get stuck in the back. I was trying to save some energy and the first mile was a little slow. The second mile was faster. When I hit the solar panels, I started running a lot faster. I’m happy with the way I ran.”

Hall was the only senior running at state for Pojoaque. Behind him, sophomore Santiago Romero was the next member of the Elks to finish the race. Romero came in 27th with a time of 17 minutes, 43.85 seconds. Next was junior Joseph Gutierrez, who came in 40th with a time 17 minutes, 58.95 seconds. Junior Sebastian Rubio came in 63rd with a time of 18 minutes, 31.35 seconds. Pojoaque’s fifth runner was freshman Lucas Tiede, who came in 91st with a time of 19 minutes, 09.80 seconds.

Also competing for Pojoaque were freshmen Isaiah Roybal and Matthew Gomez, who finished 95th and 96th, respectively.

There were 119 runners competing in Class 4A. Kirtland Central High School senior Kashon Harrison ran away with the individual championship, finishing first with a time of 15 minutes, 27.35 seconds.

Los Alamos High School took first place in the team standings, scoring 42 points. Albuquerque Academy was second with 49 points. Miyamura High School finished third with 126 points. Pojoaque scored 201 points in seventh place. A total of 15 teams competed in the Class 4A race.

“John had a great race, as did the other guys,” Pojoaque Coach Alan Lockridge said.  “We did very well. There at the starting line it was pretty awesome. Probably the strongest competition we’ve ever faced. I was happy that the younger guys got the experience of running there.”

In the girls Class 4A race, there were once again 15 teams and a total of 118 runners. Pojoaque finished 13th with a total of 327 points.

Junior Michaela Martinez led the Elkettes, finishing 49th with a time of 22 minutes, 06.80 seconds. Junior Mia Vigil came I close behind her, finishing 52nd with a time of 22 minutes, 13.20 seconds. Eighth-grader Ayla Garcia came in 88th with a time of 23 minutes, 38.05 seconds and junior Alicia Sanchez was 93rd with a time of 23 minutes, 59.40 seconds. Right behind Sanchez was Pojoaque’s fifth runner. Senior Taylor Roybal finished 94th with a time of 24 minutes, 00.85 seconds.

Also competing for Pojoaque was senior Alexis Romero, who came in 102nd  and eighth-grader Rayannon Velarde, who finished 111th.

Albuquerque Academy’s Zoe Hunter took first place with a time of 18 minutes, 56.60 seconds. She helped Academy take the team title with 31 points. Los Alamos came in second with 47 points. Hope Christian High School took third place with 119 points.

“They did a good job,” Coach Lockridge said. “They all finished and didn’t quit.”

​Pojoaque's John Hall sprints downhill in the Class 4A boys state championship race (photo by George Morse).

Pojoaque's John Hall charges to the finish line. Hall finished eighth and earned All-State honors (photo by Rhonda M. Evenhus).

​Pojoaque's Santiago Romero finished 27th for the Elks (photo by Rhonda M. Evenhus).

​Pojoaque's Matthew Gomez and Isaiah Roybal lead a pack of runners that includes Pojoaque's Lucas Tiede (797) in the Class 4A race (photo by Rhonda M. Evenhus).

The Pojoaque girls team (center, green) at the start of the Class 4A girls state championship race (photo by Rhonda M. Evenhus).

Michaela Martinez finished 49th for Pojoaque (photo by Chris Roybal).

Pojoaque's Taylor Roybal (left) and Alicia Sanchez run together in the Class 4A girls state championship race. Sanchez finished 93rd and Roybal 94th overall (photo by Chris Roybal).


Eighth-grader Ayla Garcia finished 88th for Pojoaque (photo by Rhonda M. Evenhus).

The Pojoaque girls team finshed 13th in the team standings. Team members are: Rayannon Velarde (left) Michaela Martinez, Alicia Sanchez, Alexis Romero, Taylor Roybal, Ayla Garcia, Mia Vigil (photo by George Morse).

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