Ashville girls win third straight cross country meet

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Photo: The Ashville High girls and boys cross country teams finished first and second, respectively, in the Class 1A-4A division at the Lake Guntersville Invitational 5K last Saturday (Oct. 5). Pictured, kneeling, from left: Meghan McCarthy, Emma Drinkard, Grace Staples, Taylor Knight, Emma Thompson, Kathleen McCarthy, Callie Stewart. Standing, from left: coach Michele Rogers, Walker Griffith, Bruce Pantoja, Greyson Simpson, Clayton Knight, Wyatt Knight, Alex Pantoja, Joe Stevens. (Not pictured: Molly Northam, Cesar Segura, Trace Sanford) (Chris McCarthy/Messenger)

By Chris McCarthy/Publisher/Editor

Helped by four top-10 finishes, the Ashville High girls cross country team won its third straight meet with a first-place performance in the Class 1A-4A division at the Lake Guntersville Invitational 5K last Saturday (Oct. 5).
The Lady Bulldogs’ average time of 23:00.21 was more than a minute better than that of runner-up Glencoe (24:17.23).
Taylor Knight paced Ashville with a first-place time of 21:38.38, followed by Meghan McCarthy at the runner-up spot at 22:00.11.
Glencoe’s Katie Giles and Anna Beth Giles finished fourth and fifth with respective times of 22:07.42 and 22:28.46.
Ashville’s Emma Drinkard (22:59.64) and Callie Stewart (23:33.41) placed eighth and ninth, respectively, while the Lady Yellow Jackets’ Sara Iida rounded out the top 10 with a time of 23:57.84.
Ashville’s Emma Thompson came in 16th (24:49.50), while Glencoe’s Elizabeth Harrison finished 25th (26:01.04).
“We had several runners who were not able to run due to tournaments in other sports or tests for AP classes,” said Ashville coach Michele Rogers. “On top of that, several runners are currently battling injuries or sickness. However, that didn’t stop our girls and guys from stepping up and performing to the best of their ability. I’m very proud of the effort they put forth at this meet.”
In the Class 5A-7A event, Sardis’ Barit Snead placed 13th (21:27.68).
The Ashville boys finished just 10 seconds shy of the first -place trophy in the 1A-4A boys 5K. The Bulldogs posted an average time of 18:57.00 to Kate Smith DAR’s 18:47.81.
Ashville had three runners place in the top 10 – Wyatt Knight in second (17:09.28), Joe Stevens in seventh (18:21.01) and Clayton Knight in ninth (18:31.03). Alex Pantoja came in 24th (20:14.71).
Glencoe’s Conner Cothran helped the Yellow Jackets finished seventh overall with a 17th place time of 19:45.46.

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