Lizzy Kirby leads California at state meet

California High School junior Lizzy Kirby, above with CHS Cross Country Coach Josh Grotzinger, finished 20th with 21:33.89 at the Class 2 State Cross Country Championships Saturday at Oak Hills Golf Center, Jefferson City, to earn All-State honors. This was Kirby's second consecutive trip to the state championships with the CHS Cross Country program, which is just in its second year.

California High School junior Lizzy Kirby, above with CHS Cross Country Coach Josh Grotzinger, finished 20th with 21:33.89 at the Class 2 State Cross Country Championships Saturday at Oak Hills Golf Center, Jefferson City, to earn All-State honors. This was Kirby's second consecutive trip to the state championships with the CHS Cross Country program, which is just in its second year. Photo by April Arnett.

The California High School varsity girls cross country team and Pintos Zach Merrill and Dakota Harris competed at the 2011 MSHSAA Class 2 State Cross Country Championships Saturday at Oak Hills Golf Center (5K), Jefferson City, where the Lady Pintos were led by junior Lizzy Kirby who finished 20th individually with 21:33, to earn All-State honors.

California's Ashlee Davis finished 27th with 21:51.

"Both Lizzy and Ashlee had great come-from-behind races," California Coach Josh Grotzinger said. "The girls team started in the very last box on the start-line at the bottom of a hill. Lizzy and Ashlee were around 80th place at the first mile and came back to finish 20th and 27th, respectively, with Ashlee just missing becoming California's third All-State finisher in two years. The rest of our girls also competed well with a bad start. Leah Korenberg passed at least 30 people in the last mile of the race to finish 76th with 22:55, and Elle Miller and Regan Downing raced well together to finish 135th with 21:51 and 140th with 26:25, respectively, to give us a 12th place finish overall, ahead of Fatima, who beat us three weeks ago. Sarah Couchman improved her ranking and placed 147th with 29:54, just behind Regan."

For more of this story check out the Nov. 9 issue of the California Democrat.

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