The Summerville Bears cross country team set ablaze the season Friday at the Lodi Flame Invitational.
Despite hot, sticky weather, the Bears ran with dedication, heart, endurance and talent.
Chris Hoffman-Brady led the Summerville Bears team to a fifth-place, small-school division finish. His time for the 5K race was 17:56, which led the Bears, and he finished 21st out of 126 runners.
Finishing second for the Bears was Gaige Stewart (47th) in 19:13. Other individuals to finish included Colby Dibble, 20:31; Stephen Higgenbotham, 20:41; Matthew Hartwig, 20:47; Devon Groff, 21:53; Brendan Danicourt, 23:36; Niko Lillie, 28:33; and Skylar Ryan, 29:25.
The Bears girls team finished fourth in small schools with strong beginning-of-the-season finishes.
Freshman McKenzie Hartwig came in first for the Bears girls, finishing 34th out of 118 in a time of 23:00. Emili Rico, also a freshman, followed shortly behind in 45th place in a time of 23:41. Other contributing finishers included Kiki Cazares, 24:45; Sarajean St. John, 25:21; Katie Petersen, 30:07; Shelby Conklin, 30:34; Joslyn Robles, 33:04; and Chelsea Hoffman-Brady, 39:40.
In frosh-soph action, David Munroe, John Hoffman-Brady, Will Antinetti and Griffen Webb-Barela fell one man shy of a full team, but still raced their 1.95 mile course well individually.
Munroe led the boys at 66th in a time of 12:44. Hoffman-Brady followed behind in14:12, Antinetti in 16:28, and Webb-Barela, in 23:01.
The Bears will next race in the Sierra Invitational at Modesto’s Legion Park on Saturday, Sept. 13.