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With just two races remaining in the Arizona Interscholastic Cycling League season, Flagstaff High finds itself in the hunt for the top spot.

The second-to-last race of the season gets underway today in Fountain Hills at the McDowell Mountain Regional Park, and third-place Flagstaff sits with 9,090 total team points in Division I, Prescott owns the second spot with 9,389 points and Buena High enters the race as the team to beat at 9,424 points.

Meanwhile, D-I Northland Prep enters the race at No. 5 in the standings, and D-II Coconino is looking to crack the top 10 after sitting at No. 12 after three races.

Leading more than 20 Flagstaff cyclists two weeks ago at the Wren Arena event in Fort Huachuca, Finn Perelstein won the boys freshman race to garner 500 points for his team, Pilar Carpenter took second in the girls sophomore race for 490 points and Isabella Naughton continued her solid season with a girls varsity fourth-place finish for 547 points. Also for Flagstaff, Lauren Wright finished her day with a bronze, competing in the girls freshman category, with Braden Linde and Sam Tritle and Wyatt Horner contributing top-10 finishes for the team in their respective races.

Flagstaff finished third at Wren Arena, Northland Prep took fifth and Coconino ended the day with a 16th-place finish. Basis Flagstaff, a D-II team, was 30th.

At the Wren Arena race, Northland Prep's Morgan Grube's fifth-place result in a time of 1:32:31.24 provided Northland Prep 539 points, coming in not far behind Naughton's 1:29:25.73. Lucas Benton, Jett Malooly, Kyle Zigich, Nathan Odem and Anja Drey all recorded top-10 finishes for Northland Prep.

For Coconino at Wren Arena, Zach Palmero pedaled to a third-place finish, crossing the line in 39:58.54 to lead the team.

Palmero has been a leader for Coconino all season, as he enters Sunday with the fourth-most individual points on the boys freshman leaderboard.

Flagstaff has four individuals holding on to third-place spots on the overall leaderboard heading to the Fountain Hills course, which offers challenging swooping turns, and short and steep inclines and descents.

Northland Prep's Jett Malooly will look to improve on his third spot in the overall individual boys sophomore standings.

The season finale is set to take place Sunday, Nov. 5, in Waddell at the White Tank Mountain Regional Park.

Mike Hartman can be reached at 556-2255 or at mhartman@azdailysun.com.

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Sports Reporter

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