MS State XC Championships Recap

Kathryn Foreman of Landmark Christian glides to the finish line enroute to the top Girls performance of the meet in 12:07    Image by Mr. Spock

What a fantastic morning of racing and fun in Cochran it was on Saturday as almost 1000 runners toed the line and competed in the MS State Championships. Fans lined the course the final 800 meters and cheered for their favorite teams and individuals from the Elementary Mile Run thru the Small School girls race. The hosts led by Bleckley County HS Coach Shelley Cranford did a great job putting on a show that will keep schools coming back for more.  This is my favorite meet to cover because of its organization and the parents/fans support of all the runners!

Large School

     The top boys performance of the day came from this race as Sam Bowie from Gardner Newman MS sailed across the line in 11:02 with Sean Parker (unattached) getting 2nd in 11:09. Rounding out the top 5 were Harper Sigler (running unattached) from Oconee County MS in 11:41, Frank Pittman of Sutton MS in 11:45 and Zac Cantrell of the North Cherokee Wolfpack taking 5th in 12:01. Woodland Euharlee of Cartersville dominated the team race winning with 58 points and a 12:28 team average. Leading the pack for Woodland was Kaemen Nix as he placed 7th in 12:02. Woodward Academy was a strong runnerup scoring 113 points with a 12:39 team average led by Jack Fleming's 12:31.

      The girls Individual overall was won by Mackenzie Ellison from Track Phi Track Club as she clocked a 12:50 holding off Jana Morning of Cass MS who took the nerup position in 12:54. Also having strong races were Kate Boland of Gray Station MS (Jones County) placing 3rd in 12:58, Kendall Nelson of Marist in 13:04 and Betty Jackson of Eagles Landing MS in 13:05. The Marist girls were much too strong for the field as they defended their title placing 3 runners in the top 10 (team) scoring only 48 points with a team average of 13:40. Leading the win for the Lady War Eagles was Kendall Nelson in 4th and placing 7th was Jen Mackey. Taking back home more hardware was Woodland Euharlee as they took 2nd led by Lindsay Scifers.

Small School

      Having just won the Oconee-Clarke Individual and leading his team Malcom Bridge MS to the team title 3 days ago one had to wonder what Thomas Moore had left in his tank. But he had plenty in reserve to win the overall Individual in the Small School boys race as clocked an 11;10 enroute to the win (running unattached) Matthew Delfino of Holy Redeemer took the runnerup spot in 11:19 followed by the Athens Christian duo of Jon Jenkins placing 3rd in 11:29 and James Corsaniti in 4th at 11:43. Rounding out the top 5 individuals was Anthony Potts also of Malcom Bridge in 11:48.53  just holding off Bleckley MS' Logan Bridges in 11:49. Meet host Bleckley defended their turf again taking the Team title led by Bridges scoring 66 points with a 12:25 team average. Holy Redeemer School took 2nd place behind Delfino's efforts.

     The top 2 girls performances of the day came in the final race of the day as Kathryn Foreman of Landmark Christian (running unattached) blistered the 2 Mile layout in 12:07 holding off a game effort from Bleckley County's Ellen Powell (pictured above) at 12:19. The next 3 places were hotly contested with Emma Garrison of Union County MS (mountain harrier) taking 3rd in 13:02, followed by Madison Graham of Pace Academy in 13:05 and Audrey Honiotes of Hart County MS placing 5th in 13:07. Holy Innocents pack ran their way to the team title like Marist placing 3 runners in the top 10 team positions scoring 51 points led by Bailey Pellissier's 8th place individual overall effort in 13:13. Athens Christian ran well taking 2nd place in the team standings with 106 points edging out Pace Academy with 112. Kristen Westbrook led the flock of Eagles in 7th overall in 13:12.

JV and Elementary Races

The JV Boys race was unrelentless as 190 boys crossed the finish line with Carl Ellis Horley providing some home cookin' for the host school taking the Individual overall in 13:01 as well as leading them to the team title with 43 points and a 13:32 team average. Bryn Foster led the Holy Innocents JV girls to an almost flawless victory with 19 points as she turned in a 14:05 winning the Individual title.

And...surprise, surprise, a girl won the Elementary Mixed 1 Mile Race, but this is going to be a last name that for the next 7 years we all better get ready to read/hear and see race alot as Faith Roth (of the Running Roth family) held on for victory clocking a winning time of 6:20! Her older brother Daniel was 13th in the LS Boys race at 12:20. By now we  have heard of Baily and Gabby (of Eagles Landing HS) who are the favorites to win Individual Region 4-AAA titles also.

See you all next year back in Cochran and try Scott's BBQ if you stay overnite Friday! Also the Cochran Inn and Suites is a very nice hotel only about 2 minutes from the course.