The Pisgah cross country teams finished their seasons with a pair of top-five state finishes.
Pisgah finished fifth in both the Class 1A-2A Girls and Boys state cross country meet races at the AHSAA Cross Country Championships at Oakville Indian Mounds Park and Museum on Saturday.
“I am proud of my kids and their fifth-place finishes,” said Pisgah head coach Gus Hembree. “Eight of my 19 (runners) had their best time of the year and several others were within 10 seconds of their season best. As a coach, I have a hard time being upset when my kids come out and compete at a high level against the best in the state.”
The Pisgah closed with a team score of 137 in the Class 1A-2A Girls team standings, just four points back of fourth-place Athens Bible. Cold Springs won the Class 1A-2A Girls State Championship with a winning low score of 33. Hatton (91) placed second while Ider (110) was third.
Pisgah seventh-grader Neveah Evans earned all-state honors (Top-15 individual finishers) with an 11th-place finish (22:00.86).
“I’m super excited about Neveah being all-state,” Hembree said.
Seventh-grader Kayana Stewart followed in 22nd place (22:51.33) while eighth-grader Emma Sisk was 42nd (23:45.93), freshman Riley Grider 57th (24:20.37), junior Rhylee Bell 60th (24:30.60), eighth-grader Serenity Olinger 63rd (24:49.16), seventh-grader Laily Brown 78th (25:36.02), senior Madison Phillips 103rd (27:57.49) and sophomore Kimberly Miller 106th (28:29.17).
Meanwhile, the Pisgah boys cross country program recorded its best state finish. The Eagles closed with a team score of 171. Hatton won the Class 1A-2A Boys state championship with a winning low score of 67. Bayshore Christian was the runner-up (81) while Cold Springs was third (95) and St. Luke’s fourth (124).
Freshman Tristan Little finished 19th (18:38.76) to lead the Eagles while sophomore Mason Overdear was 28th (19:03.68), seventh-grader Brodie Overdear 47th (19:46.39), freshman Dalton “Bob” Johnson 60th (19:59.97), sophomore Jake Smith 86th (21:15.84), junior Bryant Overdear 90th (21:21.86), senior Austin Wilson 100th (21:49.66), senior Holden Goff 108th (22:12.69), seventh-grader Emanuel Elizondo 110th (22:15.53) and seventh-grader Tristian Hutson 127th (23:23.69).
Hembree said he’s already looking forward to his teams’ prospects for next season.
“I am losing four great seniors that have set the bar high this season. I believe their contributions will be felt for years to come,” Hembree said. “I have a great group of kids coming back, eight of my 10 boys from state and nine of my top 10 girls. I believe we will see great things from them in the near future.”
Skyline — Three runners from Skyline ran as individuals in the AHSAA’s Class 1A-2A Girls and Boys Cross Country state championship races.
Skyline freshman Trever Saint ran to a 46th-place finish in the Class 1A-2A Boys race with a time of 19:44.43 while senior Jamison Rowell was 122nd with a time of 22:58.96.
Meanwhile, Skyline eighth-grader Katie Roach finished 85th in the Class 1A-2A Girls race with a time of 26:03.24.
“I was pleased with my runners' performances,” said Skyline coach Rhonda Saint. “I am only losing one of my three qualifiers for next season. I expect Trever and Katie to both come back strong next year. Trever had a solid finish. He was a little shy of his goal he had set for himself, but he still finished with a PR (personal record). Katie ran a great race also. She has worked hard this year. I think running at state will be motivation for her to come back ready to run and continue to improve next season.”