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Women’s cross country teams qualifies for state championships after year gap

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Women’s cross country teams qualifies for state championships after year gap

The women's cross country team poses together with their coach.

The women's cross country team poses together with their coach.

Abhiram Rishi Prattipati

The women's cross country team poses together with their coach.

Abhiram Rishi Prattipati

Abhiram Rishi Prattipati

The women's cross country team poses together with their coach.

Abhiram Rishi Prattipati, Staff Reporter

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De Anza College women’s cross country team athletes celebrate for qualifying the state championships after a year gap.

“I am happy for them that they made it again. Last year was the first year in my coaching career we didn’t have a women’s team at the state meet,” says Coach Nick Mattis.

All eight athletes in this team are competing at the championships and they placed fourth in the recent NorCal Regional Cross Country Championships at Woodward Park on Nov 17.

“Yeah at NorCals, we wanted to get second,” says Diana Rendler, 19, sociology major. “We were trying to beat Santa Rosa because we beat them last time. We ended up losing to Sierra and Santa Rosa, we got fourth but we still went to state so we are okay.”

The women’s cross country team is running extremely well this season as they rank second in the NorCal region and eleventh in the state rankings.

“We already knew we were gonna qualify,” said Rebecca Collins, 19, communications major. “We are excited to go to state but also excited to finish off the season strong.”

Collins is the only sophomore in the all freshman team and she was a track & field athlete for all four years of high school before joining De Anza cross country.

Most athletes in this team ran in Central Coast Section championships several times in high school before becoming college athletes.

Despite the different backgrounds and experiences, the athletes say the regular practices and meets made them create a family and for some, their only friends.

“They are a super-talented group of girls,” said Coach Mattis. “I hope that they all come stronger as a better team through what we have been through this year.”

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