Carrollton Last Chance Highlights and Team ReCaps

This spectacular sunrise greeted runners to the Carrollton Last Chance Invitational (photo by Daniel McCauley)

Only 1125 runners participated at the annual Last Chance meet at the 'State Course' Saturday. Very few ranked larger school teams ran their Varsity squads or came at all. But, those in attendance took advantage all around, giving their JVs a chance to test out the layout. In 2 weeks though, this venue will be electric..can you feel it? Will you be there to witness one of the best HS sporting events in GHSA Championship history?

"A chip off the Old Block perhaps?" Anna Marian Block of Athens Academy was dominant, throwing down the gauntlet in the A-AA race going 18:28 (photo by Daniel McCauley)

A-AA Girls-

Anna Marian Block of Athens Academy, fresh off her destruction of the ACS course record by :40 at 17:50..tore up some turf in the A-AA race going 18:28 defeating all the top A Private girls including Emma Grace Hurley by :48. Which begs the question..did the chase pack, which consisted of Hurley (19:16), Kathryn Foreman of Landmark Christian (19:28) and Sophia West of Paideia (19:38) just backoff and let her go, or is Block just that good? We'll find out on November 7th for sure. I believe the latter...

Emma Grace Hurley of Fellowship Christian cruised in after Block jetted away the final mile, perhaps saving her best for 11-7.. (photo by Daniel McCauley)

Legendary Hall of Fame coach, Bill Thorn may at last have his troops close to 100% again which is bad news for contending A Private squads.... Landmark Christian certainly seems to be the favorite in A Private after Saturday, winning the race in a very strong 20:20. Hebron Christian's gals may have their work cut out for them now... 3A Westminster ran down in class and definitely tempoed it with a 1-5 Split of :47. 8-A Athens Academy defeated 5-A Paideia, who actually had a strong outing, but is firmly on the bubble in Region 5-A...In a strange turn of events, Westminster was denied a trophy for running down in Class...

Austin Taylor of Landmark Christian proudly wears his 1st place Medal (photo by Daniel McCauley)

A-AA Boys- Landmark Christian's boys just need to stay healthy for 2 more weeks, as they easily won the race and every week look more and more like the team everyone else will be chasing 11-7. Austin Taylor won the overall at 17:45 and Seth Cruver was 2nd in 18:53. Athens Academy's young squad was led by frosh Alex Branch's 18:07 as the Sparties bested Paideia.

Max Heaberlin, Nasir Campbell and Alex Haskins crest the big hill together in the A-AA race (photo by Daniel McCauley)

The Pythons ran fairly well, although without their top runner, Griffin McCauley who was ill. Junior 'Mad' Max Heaberlin ran well taking 3rd in 18:05 along with 800 meter specialist Nasir Campbell at 18:06. With a healthy, rested McCauley, Paideia is a strong Podium contender...

Bleckley's top ranked AA boys work as a team in the AAAAA race (photo by Daniel McCauley)

AAAAA Boys- The top 4 teams in the Boys race all ran up in Class with AA title contender Bleckley County getting their first look at carrollton this year winning as a team seemingly tempoing it with a 1-5 Split of :21... 4A Apalachee was 2nd led by Merit Fontinel's 18:03. Alex Salgado led 4A Columbus to 3rd with an 18:03 and Chapel Hill's Wilson Moore won the race in 17:27

Start of the 5A Boys race. (photo by 'Super Dan' McCauley)

Girls- Jones County may have their best Girls team in recent history and won the Girls race by 10 points over Columbus HS taking 3 of the top 4 places. In first was frosh Erin Leonard with a solid 20:22 followed by Kate Boland in 2nd (20:48) with Kaitlyn Holder 4th (21:55) Erin Salgado led the Blue Devis efforts taking 3rd overall at 21:08. AA Bleckley County seemed to tempo like their Boys squad did.

The Central Gwinnett Black Knights celebrate (photo by Daniel McCauley)

AAAAAA Boys- In what had to be the smallest 6A race in meet history, Central Gwinnett triumphed scoring 47 points beating Campbell by 2 points. Axel Avalos led the Knights placing 2nd overall in 17:22. Former 6A ROW Geoffrey McCullough of Campbell dominated the race with a solid outing at 17:01.

Geoffrey McCullough of Campbell won the 6A Boys race easily. (photo by Daniel McCauley)

Marielle Lewis from Campbell won the 6A Girls race (photo by Daniel McCauley)

Girls- Same boat as the Boys...Archer did run their top 5 and won the race easily in preparation for Region Saturday afternoon at Georgia International Horse Park. Sr Halle Smith led the way placing 2nd in 21:10. Winning the Overall title was Campbell's Marielle Lewis at 20:51.

These two runners from Archer shot to the lead right from the gun in the 6A race. (photo by Daniel McCauley)

Thomas Adkins from Whitewater (file photo by Daniel McCauley)

AAA-AAAA Boys- These guys may have began the race as a tempo, but it became competitive quickly as the race wore on. Westminster ended up with the best hand winning with a 1-5 Split of :47 led by Sr Clare Draper's 17:31. Johnson Gainesville warmed up for a knockdown-dragout 8-AAAA fight taking 2nd led by 10-18 ROW Gerardo Suarez's winning time of 16:50 along with Issac Hernandez's 17:10.

Sam Ellis of Decatur (R), Chandler Kennedy of East Jackson (L) (file pic via ga.milesplit)

Whitewater ran strong with 'Flyin' Hawaiian' Thomas Adkins pushing it hard for 2nd Overall in 16:55. Decatur's Sam Ellis had a test drive on the State course taking 3rd in 17:09. White County had a very strong race ending with an 18:10 team avg. and 1:00 Split. East Jackson's Chandler twins did tempo and some of their guys dnr, but jogged the course...


Serena Tripodi cruised to the win in the AAA-AAAA Gals race (file pic by Matt Almand)

The top gals in this race definitely eased off the pedal a bit as indicated by the times ran. Lovett wore everyone out though scoring 48 points. Serena Tripodi claimed the top spot Overall looking very relaxed in 19:23. Haley Hooper had a nice outing back in 3rd at 20:22.

Sue Ann Morales of East Jackson (file photo by Daniel McCauley)

East Jackson's Sue Ann Morales cruised around the hills enjoying herself placing 2nd in 20:14. Jenna Gearing came across 4th for White County in 20:41. Not sure what to make of Wesleyan's intentions for the race except they ran much faster at Coach Wood last week. Everyone in AA will be chasing Lovett on 11-7 and fighting for 2-4 Podium spots. Decatur lost their Coach on Friday for the season, but ran to 5th place. Their 3-7 runners will need to do better in 2 weeks to have a shot at being a Podium squad.


Elite Performances-

Below are the performances entered for the meet that met the national silver standard.

HS Girls
5,000 Meter Run18:28.62Anna Marian BlockAthens Academy
5,000 Meter Run19:16.55Emma Grace HurleyFellowship Christian School
5,000 Meter Run19:23.49Serena TripodiLovett
5,000 Meter Run19:28.24Kathryn ForemanLandmark Christian School
5,000 Meter Run19:38.09Sophia WestPaideia

5 National Elites. 21 Elites.