Vote for the Telegraph's Athlete of the Month

By: Staff Report
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Marissa Mendez, Andrew Benavides and Maria Malone have been nominated for the Folsom Telegraph’s November Athlete of the Month. Register on our Web site at and then vote for your favorite athlete. Mendez, a sophomore at Vista del Lago, placed 35th in the Div. IV state championship race held at Woodward Park in Fresno. Mendez finished the race with a personal-best time of 19 minutes, 42 seconds and was the 12th sophomore to cross the finish line. Benavides caught 19 passes for 362 yards and five touchdowns in three games during November, including hauling in 11 passes for 208 yards and five touchdowns during Folsom’s 45-42 playoff loss to Napa. “Andrew is proof that you don’t have to be a big guy to be a successful high school football player,” Folsom coach Kris Richardson said. “He was untouchable in space and teams couldn’t stop him. He definitely earned the title of All-Purpose MVP (of the league).” Malone didn’t compete all season, but came back from a painful injury not yet healed to run marvelously at the Sac-Joaquin Section and state championships. By competing at sections, Malone helped the Lady Bulldogs qualify for the state finals as a team. Individually, Malone won the race in 18:59. At the state meet, Malone placed seventh in 17:55, helping the Lady Bulldogs to a 15th-place finish as a team. “It’s scary to think how fast she would have run if she hadn’t been hurt,” Folsom coach Dave Gregson said. “Not too many people would have done all the work that she did on her own. To do what she did in spite of the adversity she was under is a testament to her.”