The 2013 Louisiana State Cross-Country Championships began in Natchitoches yesterday afternoon with the running of the small school classifications (B,C,1A, & 2A).
Getting things kicked off was boys classification C. Contrary to the opinions of those participating in our prediction contest, Elizabeth took a very close team title over Johnson Bayou with 52 points, 9 points ahead of pre-state favorites Holy Rosary. Individually, the race was not as close, as Randy Carter Jr. gapped the field, and won in 17:27.
Much like Carter, Patrick Torry of Patrick Taylor would lead from gun to tape, championing 22 seconds ahead of his next competitor, and leading his team to the Class B title.
As morning turned to early afternoon, the sun came out and heated the air, and the wind gave a false feeling of continued "primet"conditions. Runners coming through the finishing chute, however, began to feel the effects of the oncoming "hidden heat".
In girls Class C, Gabrielle Jennings opened up a lead and finished nearly 3 minutes ahead of her younger sister Madelyn (2nd place). Despite her large margin of victory, her time would be over a minute slower than a race she won a week ago earlier.
In girl's Class B the race would see one of the top contenders collapse in the chute from a combination of the heat and effort, but not before giving the crowd a show. In one of the more exciting races of the day, Celia Zaeringer would dart from the start, in an attempt to run away from rival Clarissa Smith of Holden. Having never lost to Clarissa, until the Northshore Metro Championships a week prior, it was apparent Celia was not going to go lightly in her final XC race.
Despite the fast pace, however, Clarissa would remain close, and just when it seemed like she would be finishing second, Clarissa closed the gap. With the final, sprint, and inches from the finish, Celia would muster one last gear, but could not hold off a charging Smith, collapsing at the line with her final effort.
In boys 1A, Ascension Catholic would turn in a dominant performance - recording a 20 pt team total to take the 1A crown. In 2A, an equally, if not exceedingly impressive feat came from Dupe's knights, as they captured their 18th straight championship for class 2A. Bryan Stamey (2A), and Zach Capello (1A) would take the titles in those races.
In the final races of the day Menard (2A) took home the expected title, while the girl's of Ascension Catholic (1A) competed the sweep for coach Rocky Capello.
Keep checking back at our state meet page for continued coverage:
Meet action continues today at 11:00 AM.