This Saturday, Lowell HS will host the 47th Annual Lowell "San Francisco" Invitational (Malcolm Slaney photo above) at the world-famous Golden Gate Park. This meet has been the coming-out party for some of the top teams and individuals in this area and beyond. This year's version will not disappoint as the competition should be outstanding from the first boys' freshman race at 9 am to the last boys' Varsity race at 2:30 pm. The teams that will be competing are listed in the next page and as you can see, it's an assortment of some of the best teams in the state, regardless of division.
All of the races, as you see below, will be separated due to the large-sized fields. Although some of the top teams and individuals won't be facing each other, we should still get some very fast times and performances (Top 10 lists for both boys and girls are posted on the 2nd page).
Among the top teams competing will be the Bellarmine boys who always have strong representation in all the races and will probably field two very strong varsity teams in the last two races. The Granada boys and girls have been one of the top teams in NCS and will be loaded once again this season following a very strong senior class in 2018. Traveling from the south will be a very strong Arcadia HS team which has been one of the top teams in the Southern Section and secured two NXN titles in the past. Sir Francis Drake has been one of the top Division IV teams in the state. Just posted are the race assignments and the first race will be loaded with Clovis North, Arcadia, Bellarmine and West Torrance.
Two San Francisco teams that will be strong this year are University and the host team Lowell. The University boys won their first state title in school history while their girls also made the podium at state. Lowell may have one of their deepest boys team ever and will be looking to improve their place at state this season.
The top individuals include Carlmont senior Kaimei Gescuk who won the CCS 3200m race and had bests of 5:00.51 and 10:32.95 during the 2018 Track and Field season. Marin Catholic junior Samantha Wallenstrom won her first section and state titles in the 800m and will be entering her 3rd cross country season with lots of confidence following her fantastic finish on the track. Menlo senior Charlotte Tomkinson (Malcolm Slaney photo above) won her second section title in the 800m and finished 2nd at the California state track and field meet in the same event. Teammate Kyra Pretre won the CCS 1600m title and helped Menlo win the section team title. Other noteworthy names include Milania Perez of Clovis North who scored PRs of 4:54.85 and 10:44.94 and Madison Kackley of Gregori (4:58.52 and 10:39.35).
For the boys, Bellarmine junior Colin Peattie had an even more impressive sophomore season on the track highlighted by a 2nd place finish in the 1600m at the state track and field meet with a time of 4:09.99. He won last year's Lowell Invitational with one of his patented kicks. Teammate Nolan Topper qualified as the last entrant in the 3200m at the CCS meet but broke out at the state meet with a huge PR of 9:09.89. West Torrance senior Jake Parker also had an impressive spring with PRs of 4:12.06 and 9:10.27. College Preparatory senior Jacob Lehman-Duke is one of the best Division V runners in the state with PRs of 4:27.56 and 9:28.22. University senior Charlie Kennedy will lead the University Red Devils this season as a senior and had PRs of 1:56.40 and 4:26.54 on the track.