Bolivar continued to dominate its district in girls cross country, as the Liberators took home their third consecutive district title and qualification to the State meet in Jefferson City, Mo. next weekend.
The Lady Liberators cleaned up in the district meet by putting five runners in the top 15. Bolivar head coach Ron Bandy is building quite the cross country program, qualifying the girls to the state meet for the first time in school history just four years ago.
CLICK HERE FOR CLASS 3 DISTRICT 6 PHOTOS
“We are pretty excited on the girls’ side, that’s our third district title in a row. The ladies just really pulled it together today,” Bandy said. “Our goal was to win today, hopefully carry that into next week, and come out with a trophy. Our girls are very solid, they have done a lot of offseason work, (and) they’re together all of the time; just a very close knit group of girls.”
Bolivar’s strategy was effective by packing up at first and conserving energy and then cutting loose with everything they had
the last mile.
“The kids have guts and that can take you miles and miles in cross country,” Bandy said. “We are planning to work up our level of talent to achieve a state trophy in Jefferson City.”
McDonald County ended up second in the team race.
Rogersville’s freshman Allie Pell ran away with an individual title, with a time of 19:56.33. Her approach was simple, to keep her speed on hills and to pace her breathing everywhere in between, which she says plays quite the trick on the runner behind her.
“I was pretty nervous since I didn’t know if I was going to make the top 15 at all or not,” Pell said. “I was really excited about getting first, and I’m glad I finished well. I’m really excited about qualifying to state, Rogersville is a great program and we are just like a family.”
CLICK HERE FOR CLASS 1 DISTRICT 6 PHOTOS
Buffalo’s Shelby Jackson finished second with a time of 20:22. Bolivar’s Cora Butcher-Spellman and Carl Junction’s JeLynn Tatum were next in third and fourth in times of 20:26 and 20:48. Marshfield’s Ashley Runayn rounded out the top five with a time of 20:53.
In Class 1, Humansville’s Sarah Kurpjuweit clinched first place with no trouble with a time of 21:39. Emily Hinkle of Marion C. Early and Jasper’s Monica Steeves finished second and third in times of 21:50 and 22:46. Halfway’s Katy Hensley and Marion C. Early’s Kaitlyn Painter completed the top five.
McDonald County rolls in boys’ race
The McDonald County boys have struggled with executing strong races at the same time this season, but on Saturday the Mustangs pulled it all together at the opportune time.
“I’m very pleased with how our guys ran, they exceeded my expectations. I’m glad we were able to take care of ourselves and work hard all year,” Coach Darbi Stancell said. “We knew today would be really tight with five teams going for it, so we knew what it was going to take grab one of those qualifying spots.”
The 5K course on Southwest Baptist campus isn’t an easy one, which rarely gives runners a chance to open up and press a lead. In order to pull out a successful time, runners had to accelerate corners and drive hills well. There is always some pitch, roll or corner which can separate the experienced runners from the youthful ones.
McDonald County Senior Caleb Littlefield rolled to the individual title easily over second place finisher Jonathan Murphy of Buffalo.
“I’m so excited that I got the win,” Littlefield said. “Patience was my strategy, I definitely wanted that first place spot. I’m striving for All-State next weekend, and today’s results we all can be satisfied with.”
Regardless of Mac County’s youth, the Mustangs plan to finish in the top 12 in Jefferson City.
“County kids are tough, they travel long distances to practice because we are so spread out,” Stancell said. “We get a bad reputation sometimes, so it’s nice to show people that even though we live in a rural area, we’re tough and we can compete.
Rogersville’s Ben Bach grabs third spot. Marshfield’s Cole Burchfield and Andrew Tarka of Bolivar round out the top five.
Dakota Shoemaker of Humansville reels in the victory for Class 1 with a time at 17:17. Thomas Jefferson’s Chris Saladin and Humansville’s Jacob Brown came down to a close second and third placing with times of 17:34 and 17:37. Hermitage’s Hunter Semple and Fair Play’s Lane Rippee conclude the top five.
Bolivar finished second in the team race.
Class 3: Class 1:
1. Bolivar 1. Marion C. Early
2. McDonald County 2. Jasper
Class 3: Class 1:
6. Faith Owens – McDonald County 20:59 6. Cheyenne Cahalan – Weaubleau 23:13
7. Sierra Wells – Bolivar 21:11 7. Memphis Coble – Humansville 23:19
8. Grace Cloud – Monett 21:28 8. Elisabeth Whaley – Fair Play 23:32
9. Joey Ash – Reeds Spring 21:29 9. Riki Meagher – Weaubleau 23:57
10. Jessica Cox – Bolivar 21:30 10. Kamryn Stump – Jasper 24:01
11. Lindsay Wilson – Bolivar 21:31 11. Miranda Lightfoot – Fair Play 24:05
12. Veronica Hancock – Bolivar 21:33 12. Haley Bennett – Jasper 24:07
13. Christina Harter – Rogersville 21:35 13. Hunter Lamphere – Sheldon 24:22
14.Yessy Domingues – McDonald County 21:44 14. Abby Winborn – Hermitage 24:24
15. Kylie Littlefield – McDonald County 21:45 15. Lexi Bergthold - Hermitage 24:27
Class 3: Class 1:
1. McDonald County 1. Fair Play
2. Bolivar 2. Hermitage
6. Connor Hackworth – McDonald County 6. Kasey Jones – Sheldon 18:16
7. Aaron Freeman – Rogersville 7. Jacob Holliday – Jasper 18:23
8. Chandler Yeary – Rogersville 8. Keaton Wheeler – Marion C. Early 18:30
9. Conner Underwood – McDonald County 9. Jalen Wakefield – Fair Play 18:40
10. Jake Sanders – Bolivar 10. Gordon Gilbertson – Fair Play 18:41
11. Michael Morley – Monett 11. Parker Glouse – Walnut Grove 18:44
12. Joshua Bertoldie – Marshfield 12. Austin Burns – Thomas Jefferson 18:48
13. Devin Corbin – Carl Junction 13. Dylan McConnell – Marion C. Early 18:58
14. Tony Miceli – Reeds Spring 14. Justin Reynolds – Hermitage 19:05
15. Ryan Dickey – Bolivar 15. Allen Meyer – Hermitage 19:06