By Mary O’KEEFE
Crescenta Valley Park will be filled with runners this weekend all competing in the Kenny Staub/John Barnes Invitational hosted by Crescenta Valley High School.
Crescenta Valley Cross Country teams will be well versed on the terrain of the park at Saturday’s race. They start their practice after school at the park where they run nine to 10 miles a day.
They did miss some practices due to the poor air quality during and after the Station Fire.
“It slowed us down at first but not now,” said sophomore Dylan Devens.
He added the key to running the upcoming race was to stay ahead.
When asked how he gets through every day of practice, junior Cory Williams said, “At the beginning you don’t feel the pain but by the end you just want to finish.”
Coach Mark Evans said there wasn’t really a problem catching up after the delayed start.
“We have a strong program,” he said.
A good portion of the team graduated last year, Evans is now working with a younger team.
“Rebuilding the team can be tough for the [runners] but they are improving,” he said.
The girl’s team has a few more experienced runners than the boys but with each race Evans sees improvement.
Fifty five teams are scheduled to participate in the invitational. The first event of the day begins at 8:15 a.m.
Cross County’s Booster Club’s Pancake Breakfast fundraiser will held before the first race, tickets are $5.