Fortna leads CB West to first perfect season in 52 years

The Central Bucks West boys cross country team raced to its first undefeated season since 1962, captured the Suburban One League’s Continental Conference title, finished third in the district and sixth in the state.

Setting this historic pace was Bucks junior Rock Fortna.

Chosen as The Reporter’s Athlete of the Year for boys cross country, Fortna helped lead West to one of the finest seasons in the school’s proud history.

The junior was at his best on a cool, blustery day at Lehigh University, where the runner inside him simply took over.

“It was really competitive, and whether you do well or don’t, it’s fun to just go out there and compete,’ he said. “I did well, and I was happy with the way I raced — it was fun.’

Fortna’s time of 16:03 earned him a 13th-place finish in the rugged District One Class AAA race, and — most importantly — he led West to third place overall, as the Bucks qualified for states as a team for the first time.

“This feels awesome,’ Fortna said after the race. “We put in a lot of work and it just feels great to have it pay off.’

The Bucks were just 50 seconds apart one through five, as they finished with 169 points, outracing other top programs like fourth-place Council Rock North (208) and fifth-place Downingtown West (227).

CB West then headed to the state championship race in Hershey, where the Bucks slimmed their gap to 46 seconds on the tough, hilly terrain of Parkview. Fortna again led the way, racing to a 43rd-place finish in 16:42.

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