Sushchikh, DP girls claim Channel XC crowns

It was a special day for Dos Pueblos High cross country at the Channel League Championships as Sergey Sushchikh ran away with the individual boys title and the Chargers captured their first girls team title in 13 years.

Sushchikh has been a force on the cross country trails this fall and the junior star continued his dominance Thursday, running a personal best of 15 minutes, 13 seconds on the flat three-mile course at Ventura’s Camino Real Park. It was his sixth race victory of the year.

Sushchikh’s individual title helped the Dos Pueblos boys to a second-place finish behind Ventura, earning them a berth in the CIF Prelims next Saturday at Mt. San Antonio College.

The Charger girls punched their ticket to Mt. SAC after a stellar job of pack running. Sophomore Lauren Guthrie led the way with a personal best of 18:52, good for fifth place. She was followed by Erin Campbell in sixth with a PR of 19:01. The next three DP finishers were Sophie Pollack (19:46) in 13th place, Sarah Jamieson (19:50) in 15th and Lara Schwalenberg (19:51) in 16th.

Santa Barbara’s Briggs Deardorff qualified for the CIF Prelims by finishing in third place in the boys race. He ran a personal best of 15:23.

“Briggs’ times are dropping, and we’re gonna hope we can ride it out as long as we can,” Santa Barbara coach Olivia Perdices said. “His times are where he wants them to be. It was blazing fast on both sides today.”

Santa Barbara’s other top finishers were Nolan Walker in 16:23 and Nat Taylor in 16:34. Both times were personal bests.

Briana Lopez, running on a sprained ankle, clocked in at 20:12 for 21st place in the girls race.