Powers hates to lose

Corona del Mar girl wins Division III junior race to lead dominating effort by Sea Kings at 27th annual Laguna Hills Invitational.

September 11, 2010|By Steve Virgen,

LAGUNA HILLS — Corona del Mar High cross country coach Bill Sumner can't tell a certain story about Ashlee Powers without laughing. It's a giddy laugh for sure.

Last month during the CdM boys' and girls' training at Mammoth, Powers was struggling as she competed in a push-up contest. She was behind the winner by 15 push-ups, Sumner said. The CdM junior appeared spent and ready to fall on her belly. But slowly, one push-up after the next she caught up to the person in first place and after one more push-up to win, she stopped.

"She doesn't like losing, so that's good news," Sumner said while smiling.

He has good reason to be happy, as Powers showed her disdain for losing and won the girls' Division III junior race at the 27th annual Laguna Hills Invitational Saturday.


Her time wasn't anything to brag about, as she finished the three-mile course in 18 minutes, 47.13 seconds. That was 23rd overall, tops among the female runners from the Newport-Mesa area.

CdM's Austin Barvin, who finished second in the Division III senior race, led the local boys finishing 26th overall in 15:59.79, just ahead of Newport Harbor's Austin Little, who finished sixth in the Division II senior race in 16:00.72, and 27th overall.

The big meet featured races by grade and division. CdM's junior girls appeared to have posted the most dominating effort of the meet to win their division.

Led by Powers, the Sea Kings had seven runners in the top 16, including: Kristen Rivera (second in 19:07.56), Megan Zwerling (5th, 19:39.22), Kylie Walker (9th, 20:39.14), Alex Dickens (12th, 20:47.33), Sara Silverman (14th, 20:48.65) and Sarah Hoppe (16th, 20:56.07).

Powers' older sister, Melanie, the team's top runner last year, graduated in the spring and now runs for Wake Forest.

The younger Powers says she is motivated by the pressure she feels as she tries to maintain the family tradition at CdM. She wants to be the Sea Kings' top runner.

"I feel a lot of pressure," Powers said. "It motivates me because since she went to such a prestigious college, I feel like I have to too, just to follow that.

"There's competition there because we are so close in age. I keep a log of her times and I see how I measure up against her. I think I'm doing pretty good. I'm pretty close to her times when she was my grade."

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