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Flintridge Prep cross-country looks to double its pleasure

Cross-country: Top-ranked Rebels poised to win boys', girls' divisional titles, while Flintridge Sacred Heart, Crescenta Valley and La CaƱada's Anna Frederich look to advance to state.

November 22, 2013|By Andrew J. Campa, andrew.campa@latimes.com
  • The Flintridge Prep girls will attempt to lead a double sweep of the CIF Southern Section Divisional Championships in the Division V race on Saturday. (Raul Roa/File Art)
The Flintridge Prep girls will attempt to lead a double…

From a historical standpoint, the Flintridge Prep cross-country program is on the cusp of something special heading into Saturday morning’s CIF Southern Section boys’ and girls’ cross-country championships at Mt. San Antonio College.

The Rebels boys’ and girls’ teams lead a five-entry local contingent that consists of the Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy girls’ team, the Crescenta Valley High boys’ squad and La Cañada High individual qualifier Anna Frederich, all of which are looking for team and individual titles, while also trying to advance to the following week’s season-ending CIF State Meet in Fresno.

Yet, perhaps it’s fair to say Flintridge Prep stands alone, as the Rebels are preparing to become the first school in two years to win both boys’ and girls’ teams titles in the same season.

“This is the most excited I’ve ever been. I think there’s a real possibility of that happening,” Flintridge Prep girls’ co-coach Mike Roffina said. “I told [co-coach] Jill [Riehl] that that would be a cool thing for this school and this city.”

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This possibility is partially due to the rise of the Flintridge Prep girls’ program, which finished fifth with 144 points at last year’s divisional finals.

Roffina’s Rebels entered top-ranked and didn’t disappoint in finishing with the best team time (1 hour, 39 minutes and 9 seconds) of any divisional squad at last week’s divisional preliminaries. That feat was made more impressive given that it was accomplished without the services of No. 1 runner Sarah Yoho, who sat out due to soreness.

Yet, Yoho’s health is only one potential problem as there’s a 30% chance of rain for Saturday, according to weather.com, which may force the use of the shorter and faster rain course.

“Let me first say that Sarah will run on Saturday, so we can put that question to bed,” Roffina said. “As for the team, we’re focused and we’re ready to run on whatever course and despite whatever the weather is. We’re ready.”

The Flintridge Prep girls compete in the Division V championship at 9:45 a.m.

Exactly an hour later, the Rebel boys will try to secure the first sweep since Palos Verdes (Division III) in 2011 and first Division V double victory since Woodcrest Christian in 2007.

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