Monsignor Edward Pace High School men’s and women’s cross country teams participated in the 14th annual FLRunner.com Invitational Cross Country Race at Chain of Lakes Park in Titusville on October 5.
Pace cross country captain, Peter Paul Grooten, claimed the overall individual title in the unseeded B category with a career best performance of 16:58.
This record time for Grooten not only won the race but also created a new school record holder for the 5K race. The combined victory of Grooten's title and the cross country teams personal bests propelled the team to finish second overall in the team standings.
The men’s cross country team average improved from 18:58 to 18:20. This week, the Pace men’s team is ranked in the top 25 in class 2A. Other runners contributed to the team victory including Dimitri Wolf (personal best of 18:02), Chris Ventura (season best with 18:28), Omar Padilla (personal best of 18:58), Matthew Figueroa (personal best of 19:15), Chad Fowler, Gregory Louis and Daniel Labrousse.
The women's cross country team had Natalie Fernandez run a career best of 22:39 for the 5K course, a 1:01 improvement over the previous invitational held at Spanish River. Naja Murphy, for the third consecutive week, set another career best of 23:42 for the 5K course, a 12 second improvement from Spanish River.
Both Fernandez and Murphy finished 49th and 69th out of 168 participants.