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Last week at the Highland Cross Country Invitational, Yonas Haile of Cleveland High School and Eldorado’s Jasmine Turtle-Morales separated themselves from the competition with first place finishes.

Haile clocked in at 16:20.59.  He says the race got off to a good start, but took a wrong turn…literally.  “I took a wrong turn after the one-mile mark,” explained Haile.  “I had to completely turn around and hurdle over the rope.  That was a minor setback, but I’m just glad I got to keep my pace going.”

“That was my first time taking the wrong course, like ever, which was pretty idiotic, but it happens.”

“Yonas is running well right now,” said Cleveland coach Kenny Henry.  “He was able to win our home meet and followed it up with a win at Highland.  He is training very hard with hopes of being one of the state’s best runners all season long.”

Turtle-Morales crossed the finish line in a time of 19:09.89.  “I just wanted to start out fast and stay out fast,” she described. “I thought someone would be right there behind me, but I guess not.”

Haile and his Cleveland teammates, along with Turtle-Morales and the Eldorado squad, will compete at the Albuquerque Academy Invitational this Friday.  25 schools are expected to take part.  “The Academy Cross Country Invite attracts the top teams from various classifications and all parts of the state,” said Chargers coach Adam Kedge. “The quality of the field favors those teams that have good depth, making the battle at the 4thand 5thrunner critically important to the success of their squad.”

The boys varsity race begins at 3pm with the girls varsity starting at 3:30pm.

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