St. Mary’s High senior Bridget Duffy captured her second straight CIF Division IV cross country state championship on Saturday at Woodward Park in Fresno, running through a heavy rain to take the lead during the race’s second mile and winning with a time of 18:33.
Duffy is only the 13th female runner to win multiple state titles. She finished nearly 70 yards ahead of the second place finisher, Bishop O’Dowd’s Danila Musante. Musante also finished second behind Duffy at the North Coast Section finals.
“I just tried to take control with one mile to go. I tried to surge every corner and hold them off,” Duffy said.
The St. Mary’s girls finished 10th in the Division IV race. Freshman Gabi Rios-Sotelo finished 16th in a time of 19:28.
Duffy said she actually liked running in the harsh conditions, which was a new experience for her.
“Actually, I was hoping it would rain when (the race) started, so I was happy when it did,” Duffy said. “I’ve never run a cross country race in the rain. I think the worse the conditions, the better I can run.”
Duffy’s time was 18 seconds slower than her winning pace last season, when the conditions were considerably better at the same course.
St. Mary’s Rudy Vasquez finished fourth in the boys Division IV race in a time of 16:07, with Taft High’s Billy Nelson winning the race. Vasquez finished 10th at the event last season.