Last updateTue, 25 Oct 2016 5pm

Los Altos High's new cross-country coach takes a kids-first approach to running team

Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
Ken Chism was hired in June to take over the Los Altos High cross-country program.

Ken Chism, Los Altos High’s new cross-country coach, not only runs the Eagles – he runs with them.

“I’ve done that everywhere I’ve coached, and I’m still healthy enough to run,” said Chism, who ran track in college. “I generally do the off-campus runs with them. I always run in the back with the slower kids to make sure they all come back.”

Under the weather, LA runners unable to finish strong at state

Courtesy of Andrew Zaeske
Los Altos High seniors Ben Zaeske and Lauren Jacob warm up prior to Saturday’s state cross-country championships in Fresno.

The cold and flu season coincides with the end of the cross-country season, which can lead to disappointing results for runners hoping to be at their best for the biggest races of the year.

And that’s exactly what happened to Los Altos High’s Lauren Jacob and Ben Zaeske Saturday at the state championships in Fresno. Being under the weather hindered both seniors’ chances of finishing near the top in their races on the 3.1-mile course at Woodward Park.

Kim conquers course at WCAL meet

Courtesy of Roberta Chisam
St. Francis High’s Gia Kim stays ahead of Mitty’s Julia Lemak at last week’s WCAL meet. Kim beat Lemak for first place.

A mile into the girls varsity race at last week’s West Catholic Athletic League meet, St. Francis High’s Gia Kim broke from the pack and didn’t look back.

The junior “took the lead and never relinquished it,” Lancers coach Roberta Chisam said, finishing the 2.95-mile course at Crystal Springs in a personal-best time of 18 minutes, 45 seconds.

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