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(Many Paths)
An Online Newsletter Celebrating Native America
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Hopi High School Boys Win 26th Consecutive State Cross Country Championship Title
by Crystla Dee - Hopi Tutuveni

The Hopi High School Boys Cross Country team did it again and won the Division IV Cross Country State Title for the 26th time in a row. Hopi Bruin Diome Talaswaima (sophomore) finished 2nd place, a second behind individual State Champ Zhariff Lee of Many Farms, both with a time of 16:34.

"The Legend" Coach Rick Baker stands proudly with the Hopi High School Boys Cross Country Team after winning their 26th State Cross Country Championship Title
(l-r) Darion Fredericks, Trey Lomayestewa, Jihad Nodman, Diome Talaswaima, Steven Baker, Iverson Qumyintewa, and Andre Lucas
Diome Talaswaima placed 2nd with a time of of 16.34.
Team Photo: Jihad Nodman, Diome Talaswaima, Trey Lomayestewa, Steven Baker, Iversen Qumyintewa, Darion Fredericks, and Andre Lucas.
Fans and supporters look on as the Hopi Bruin boys Cross Country Team celebrate a good finish.

The first five runners for each team are counted towards the final score; points are counted in the place they finish. First place: one point, 5th place: five points and 10th place: 10 points. The team with the least points wins.

Hopi scored 59, Talaswaima, 2nd place, Andre Lucas, 9th place; Jihad Nodman, 11th; Darion Fredericks, 12th and Iversen Qumyintewa, 25th. The rest of the team: Steven Baker placed 45th and Trey Lomayestewa, 55th.

The team was greeted at the finish line with more than 100 fans and family members who traveled over 200 miles to support the team.

"I'm feeling pretty good. I think we pulled it off and the guys ran really well," said Coach Rick Baker, Hopi High Boys Cross Country. "They exceeded our expectations; Diome had a chance to win the race, but was out run."

Baker added there is always pressure being the defending State Champs. The team started out slow, but said they felt confident after the Sectionals the week before.

"We had guys who ran well so we knew they were going to run well today," said Baker.

Assistant Coach Juwan Nuvayokva said the guys ran well than they had expected them to run.

When asked about the pressure from ESPN following the team, coach Nuvayokva responded, "It was nerve wrecking, but we told the boys the publicity comes with being a part of a State Title team. They pulled it off with a win today. It's good for the Hopi community and the school."

Nuvayokva said they prepared the same way they have for the past 25 years and didn't change a thing.

Talaswaima said he felt motivated and pumped up to run, "Everyone's words near the finish line encouraged me to sprint harder. Hopi rules!"

Many Farms placed 2nd with a score of 129, followed by Pinon High School, 154 points.

Hopi Girls Cross Country

Jaeda Honani placed 2nd with a time of 19:11

Jaeda Honani, a freshman came in 2nd place with a time of 19:11; behind her were teammates Jennaya Day in 14th place, 17th Latifah Huma, 27th Lauryn Honwynewa, 52nd Leann Lomatska, 59th Verronica Casuse and 118th Pearlyn Lomahoema.

"This is one of the hardest races because it was the State finals. I ran till I had nothing left," said Honani.

This was Honani's first year running high school cross country, although she started late in the season she felt she ran well. She plans on running next year and will train next summer to get the State Title back.

The Hopi Girls Cross Country placed 3rd with a score of 112; Northland Preparatory School placed 2nd and the State Title went to Scottsdale Prep with a score of 64 points.

Girls Coach Laverne Lomakema said they had come up with a strategy to follow but fell short.

"This was the hardest and the best I've seen them run as a team," said Lomakema. "We had a lot of injuries this year and we tried to get them healthy before they got back on the trails."

Lomakema said Jaeda did good and added that she set a goal to become State Champ and to catch all the top runners.

"Jaeda has a bright future; she likes to run, but has a lot to learn," said Lomakema. "No one expected us to come in top five and that is what motivated the girls and I'm proud of them."

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