Leah Futey doesn’t necessarily have to indulge in message sending, not with her fantastic résumé, but she’s doing it, anyway.
“I’m definitely excited to see how it turns out,” she said.
Cleveland High School’s stellar senior cross country runner, dominant in a victory at the Lobo Invite on Sept. 10, followed up that performance with another tremendous run at the Rio Rancho Jamboree, one of New Mexico’s largest meets, on Sept. 17.
Futey blazed around the 5-kilometer course at Rio Rancho High School in 18 minutes, 49.9 seconds. It was almost a full 90 seconds before the runner-up, senior Eliana Rivera of Cleveland High, hit the finish line (20:19.0).
“Honestly, I’ve been admiring her since my eighth-grade year,” Rivera said. “Everyone knows who Leah Futey is. It seems like she’s unreachable.”
Futey missed the first couple of weeks of the season with an ankle sprain but has two victories in her two meets, and she looked as strong as ever at the Jamboree.
She opened up a 30-second lead less than a mile into the race, and steadily expanded the gap. She won by a similar time margin at UNM’s North Golf Course a week earlier.
“It’s sort of just been my goal this season to get as far ahead as I can, to try and get my times faster,” Futey said. “And I’ve been feeling a lot better this season, and everything has been clicking.”
Led by Futey and Rivera, Cleveland won the team title in the championship, or elite, division. The Storm scored 62 points, 14 lower than Rio Rancho. Volcano Vista (92) finished third.
Violet Francisco of Rio Rancho, Carysa Marquez of Volcano Vista and Lorianna Piestewa of Miyamura rounded out the top five.
Micah Silvers of Ganado, Ariz., won the boys championship race, although he had to withstand a furious rally by RRHS sophomore Mateo Herrera over the final 100 yards in a thrilling sprint to the finish.
Silvers took the lead about midway through the race and finished in 16:39.9. Herrera’s time was 16:40.1. Orion Chavez of Volcano Vista, Lucas Williams of Laguna-Acoma and Cody Sullivan of the Rams were in places 3-4-5, respectively.
The Rams, with five runners in the top 10, rolled to the team title. As with the girls championship division, District 1-5A swept the top three. Rio Rancho’s 34 points were easily best, followed by Volcano Vista (66) and Cleveland (83).
There was a second-tier race, the “varsity” division, won by Pojoaque Valley’s boys and Santa Fe Indian School’s girls.
Team: Rio Rancho 34, Volcano Vista 66, Cleveland 83, La Cueva 162, Ganado, Ariz., 173, Laguna-Acoma 183, Cottonwood Classical Prep 232, Pecos 235, Gallup 243, Hope Christian 269.
Individual: 1, Micah Silvers, Ganado, Ariz., 16:39.9; 2, Mateo Herrera, Rio Rancho, 16:40.1; 3, Orion Chavez, Volcano Vista, 16:48.4; 4, Lucas Williams, Laguna-Acoma, 16:53.7; 5, Cody Sullivan, Rio Rancho
Team: Pojoaque Valley 87, Cimarron 135, Maxwell 142, Grants 174, Taos 202, East Mountain 207, Mesa Vista 210, Bloomfield 222, Santa Fe Prep 244, Rio Grande 249.
Individual: 1, Tristan Pierce, Maxwell, 17:38.8; 2, Israel Garcia, Del Norte, 17:57.4; 3, Judah Daffron, Taos, 18;07.8; 4, Ashkii Secatero, West Mesa, 18:21.0; 5, Benjamin Duran, Pojoaque Valley, 18:44.3.
Team: Cleveland 62, Rio Rancho 76, Volcano Vista 92, Ganado, Ariz., 123, Cottonwood Classical Prep 146, La Cueva 182, Taos 206, Gallup 220, Farmington 241, Peñasco 264.