Defending champ Jaci McGregor and the Salado Lady Eagles cross country team are headed back to the state meet. And this time, they’re bringing the boys with them.
Both teams finished in the top three at the Region III-4A Meet in Huntsville to earn a spot in the field for the state meet Nov. 24 at Old Settler’s Park in Round Rock.
McGregor, last year’s Region IV champion, finished second Tuesday with a time of 12 minutes, 24.3 seconds on the 2-mile course at Kate Barr-Ross Park. She was 12.3 seconds behind Lufkin Hudson’s Kayleigh Wagnon.
Huffman-Hargrave won the team title with 52 points. Hudson (72) was second, and the Lady Eagles grabbed the final spot with 108 points, 19 ahead of Sealy.
Salado senior Logan Rickey is making his third trip to state, but the first with his entire team.
Rickey was fifth Tuesday, running the boys’ 3-mile course in 16:40. Burnet’s Hudson Bennett topped the field at 16:20.9.
Huffman-Hargrave won the boys meet with 74 points. Salado was next with 108. Palestine edged Hudson 117-120 for the final state berth.
Other Salado runners were Grant Sellers (15th, 17:06.6), Isaac Huerta (24th, 17:25.1), Trey Graham (35th, 17:59), Owen Pitcock (48th, 18:27.1), Brooks Dabney (56th, 18:39.6) and Jake Rechtfertig (97th, 19:59.2).
Other Salado girls runners were Anna Lesley (18th, 13:39.7), Kate Neas (38th, 14:24.9), Natalie Burleson (39th, 14:25), Avery Fossum (41st, 14:26.1), Lydia Lesley (45th, 14:31.6) and Ellie Mescher (82nd, 15:26.7).
Lake Belton was 11th in the team standings. Freshman Macey Weber (14:12.6) was 32nd to lead the Broncos contingent. Sophomore Lauren Heartsfield was 55th (14:47). Other Lake Belton runners were Deja Cavazos (76th, 15:16.6), Dalilah Zuniga (89th, 15:37.6), Emma Jez (92nd, 15:42.2) and Emily Bachicha (95th, 15:47.6).
REGION I-4A MEET
Gatesville junior Tasha Thoms is headed to her third state meet.
Thoms finished eighth in 13:02.7 on the 2-mile course at Mae Simmons Park in Lubbock.
The Hornet girls were sixth in the team standings. Also running for GHS were Payton Armstrong (49th, 14:09.8), Bethany Penrod (60th, 14:27.3), Grace Penrod (61st, 14:28), Lacy Campos (64th, 14:31.9), April Ramirez (67th, 14:33.2) and Jaycee McKown (102nd, 15:37.2).
Lampasas Brooke Coffman (13:49.5) was 33rd, and Raelean Sutton (14:39.8) was 69th.
Gatesville sophomore Carlo Martinez posted the best Hornets finish in the 3-mile boys race, finishing 16th in 17:23.1. That earned him a spot in the state meet.
San Elizario’s Edwin Gomez was the winner in 15:56.5. The Eagles also won the team championship. Gatesville finished 10th.
Also running for Gatesville were Luis Macias (25th, 17:46.5), Angel Armendariz (78th, 19:23.6), Braeden Shuemake (93rd, 20:07.8), Damien Guerrero (103rd, 20:40.3), Ramon Medina (107th, 20:54) and Morgan Clary (110th, 20:59.7)
Lampasas’ Cody Hinson (19:11.8) finished 74th.
REGION II-6A MEET
District 12 champion Kera Harvey of Ellison had the top local finish at the Jesse Owens Memorial Complex in Dallas. She was 26th in 19:21.94. Harvey finished just two spots and a little over 13 seconds behind the last individual qualifier.
The top 10 runners not on a qualifying team advanced.
Harker Heights’ Kailynn Denney (19:59.21) was 37th.
Klein’s Kristen McHugh (17:34.73) took the girls title.
The Woodlands placed five in the top 15 to easily win the team championship.
Belton was 10th. Abigail Cargile led the Lady Tigers with a 46th-place finish of 20:14.99. Other Belton runners were Shannon Cook (67th, 21:18.96), Kaitlyn MacDonald (78th, 21:48.13), Stephanie Neil (85th, 22:13.37), Kiya Castle (90th, 22:31.07), Lesa Doskocil (102nd, 23:13.04) and Shelby Littlefield (114th, 23:50.08).
Copperas Cove’s Breonna McCarthy-Reese (20:50.2) was 56th. Ellison freshman Samantha Harvey (21:09.53) was 65th.
Shoemaker’s Jaylen Stringfellow recorded the best local finish in the boys race. He was 37th with a time of 16:21.96.
Duncanville’s Martin David-Chavez was the race winner in 14:47.88. The Woodlands placed five in the top 19 to win the team title. Belton was 11th.
Other Belton runners were Zachary White (65th, 17:02.59), Zach Dennison (66th, 17:02.8), Briac Ybanez (70th, 17:05.16), Clayton Oaks (75th, 17:12.56), David Duncan (85th, 17:27.16), Weslee Baker (95th, 17:43.18) and Landon McCartney (101st, 17:58.07.)
Killeen High’s Gian Mikel Pulido (16:56.23) finished 63rd.
Harker Heights’ Luis Mora (17:35.08) was 91st.
Shoemaker’s Quinton Johnson (17:55.93) was 100th.
Ellison’s Aaron Crittenden, the District 12 champ, was 104th (18:03.98).
CLASS 4A STATE MEET
Tuesday, Nov. 24, at Old Settler's Park in Round Rock
- Girls race (3,200 meters): 11:45 a.m.
- Boys race (5,000 meters): 12:30 p.m.