We're halfway through the season and some impressive times have surfaced thus far. We've seen some surprises with individual performances, as well as some team scores that make us question our pre-season team standings.
Jack DesRoches (left) and Michael Vocke (right) at the Southern Showcase
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Jesuit's most impressive performance was when it raced its A-team out at Huntsville, Alabama for the Southern Showcase. The team overcame other top squads in the South and won the meet with 111 points with the next team finishing 63 points behind them. The Blue Jays have continued to stay undefeated when they race its A-team and could most likely see that until the end of the season.
Catholic High recently brought back Daniel Sullivan, the highest returning runner from the 2020 XC state meet. Sullivan took over the leading spot for his team but he is also supported by a close following of fellow runners. At the Catholic High Invitational, Catholic High recorded a 1-5 split of just 42 seconds and trailed Jesuit by 15 points. The Grizzlies have been the closest to overthrowing the Blue Jays, but that is yet to be seen.
Ruston's Boys after winning the Cedar Creek Wallace Martin Invitational
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Following closely behind Catholic would be Ruston. Their most recent conquest came from the St. Joseph's Academy Invitational where they took second to Catholic High. Conditions were harsh and Ruston was missing its number two runner due to food poisoning. Either way, each team was down one man, with Catholic missing Daniel Sullivan. Regardless, Ruston has a strong set of runners, three of which have run sub-16 for 3 miles.
Both of these teams have shown great potential throughout the season and have shown no sign of slowing down. It will be interesting to see who will come out on top for the title of the best team in the state. These are easily the three best teams in the state on the boys' side so far, and a conclusion will be drawn at the state meet on November 16th.
For the girls' teams, St. Joseph's Academy still stands as the best team in the state with no team close enough to challenge them. They have been undefeated in every single race they have entered in and have almost an entire top 5 that can break 19-minutes for 3 miles.
Lily Garrett winning the St. Joseph's Academy Invitational
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The Ruston girls are a low-key team that could surprise some people later in the season. They showed out at the St. Joseph's Academy Invitational with a close second-place finish to St. Joseph's. The two were only separated by 12 points, which is the closest that St. Jo's has been to being beaten this season. On top of that, they finished in front of Dominican at that same meet. The team has been led by Lily Garrett who is currently undefeated and has proved to run well regardless of weather, as seen at the St. Jo's Invite.
Morgan Trauth finishing 3rd at the St. Joseph's Academy Invitational
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Dominican is another great team that relies on its two low-sticks Kelsey Major and Morgan Trauth. These two are two of the fastest girls in the state at the moment and had, recently, one of their runners, Elise Raque, break through in her most recent race at the Catholic High Invitational. With these three strong runners on its team, Dominican is set up to be an incredible force for the rest of the season.
Check Out Page 2 for Individual Highlights