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Cross Country team aims to race in Hawaii

The+varsity+girls+and+boys+XC+team+at+the+2016+Stanford+invitational.+%0A
The varsity girls and boys XC team at the 2016 Stanford invitational.

The varsity girls and boys XC team at the 2016 Stanford invitational.

The varsity girls and boys XC team at the 2016 Stanford invitational.

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While the cross country team is used to running long distances, they aren’t used to traveling across the ocean to get to them. Cross Country coach Steven Muñoz has the opportunity to take his top runners for a competitive race in Hawaii. “I didn’t really think that we could pull it off because of the timing and funding for it, and then this year, going into my tenth year here at Alisal, I figured why not do something big.” Junior Diana Garcia, a varsity runner, said, “I was really excited to have this opportunity to spend a week and have a race in another state especially since it will be my senior year in a sport I absolutely love.”

Muñoz felt this was a good year to go, since it’s his tenth year and a milestone in coaching. He wanted them to experience something new and run in a big invitational, other than the one in Los Angeles. “We’re on a good spot financially, and I trust they can do good,” said Munoz.

As of now, seven boys and seven girls, have the chance to compete in a race at Iolani High School in Hawaii. The entree fee for schools is $100 per school, or $5 per runner, whichever is less. The Iolani Invitational will be in September in Oahu, Hawaii. If the team fundraises more than enough money, they can take more runners, but no more than 10 of each gender. All of the runners have to participate in the fundraising events in order to get credit for their trip. “They can’t get off the hook and stand in the sidelines while others are working hard, they have to raise money for their trip.”

“The goal is to raise $20,000.” Muñoz is hoping that they raise money next year in the Cross Country annual T-Shirt and Sweatshirt fundraiser. He wants to set up fundraisers with local restaurants and get donations from sponsors. “Were really banking on donations, especially from the big agricultural businesses.” The money raised will cover the expenses for the airfare, hotel accommodations, food, tours, and their entry for the race. All of this money is due by mid-June so they can have all of the hotel rooms and transportation ready. Julio Chavez didn’t care about having to fundraise a lot of money,  “When I heard about having to fundraise money, I felt that it’s a once in a lifetime opportunity so it would be worth it.” Each runner has to raise $1,000 and if a runner does not raise the money, they won’t go. Munoz said,  “The goal is for all 20 runners to go. They each need to fundraise all 1,000$. If they don’t raise enough money for all 20 to go, only 7 will go. No more, no less.”

The trip will cost each person anywhere from $1,000-$1,300 depending on the costs of the airfare, accommodations, and activities they plan to do. Not only will they go to compete against new faces, but they will also be touring the historical sites throughout Oahu and Honolulu. In Oahu, Muñoz plans to take his runners to visit Pearl Harbor, and the volcanic tuff cone, aka, Diamond Head. They will also get to visit the Polynesian-theme park and living museum in Laie, as well as going on a team hike with Muñoz. “I was really excited because before in the past years, I was never considered as one of the advanced runners and now I have this honor to go to Hawaii for a week with my friends and it makes me realize that when I work hard enough, I can do anything,” said Jesus Alfaro.

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Cross Country team aims to race in Hawaii