Nevaeh Evans crosses the finish line to finish second during the Class 1A-2A Girls Section 4 Cross Country 5K Race Thursday at John Hunt Park in Huntsville, helping Pisgah claim the team sectional championship.

Gus Hembree can still remember how the Pisgah girls cross country team was disappointed with its sectional runner-up finish in 2020.

And for the past year, winning the title has been one of the Eagles’ goals.

Pisgah achieved that goal Thursday, claiming the 2021 Class 1A-2A Girls Section 4 Race championship at John Hunt Park in Huntsville.

“They set their goal to win sectionals,” Hembree said. “Rhylee Bell has stepped as a senior the last couple of weeks. She has pushed the younger girls and our 1-6 split (between runners) is the best we have ever had.”

The win advanced the Eagles to next weekend’s AHSAA Cross Country Championships.

Pisgah closed with a winning low team score of 40 points. Sand Rock (56 points) was the sectional runner-up while Athens Bible (95) and Falkville (111) rounded out the top-four teams that earned state meet berths. Cedar Bluff (129) finished fifth while Lindsay Lane (133) was sixth and Section (137) was seventh.

Pisgah’s top-five scoring runners all finished in the top-13 and its top-six runners finished in the top-15.

Eighth-grader Nevaeh Evans finished second overall in the 5K race with a time of 21:53.83 for Pisgah while Bell was sixth (22:57.75), eighth-grader Kayana Stewart eighth (23:03.42), seventh-grader Katie Edwards 11th (23:30.48), seventh-grader Destiny Lewis 13th (23:51.28), freshman Emma Sisk 15th (23:55.50), junior Kimberly Miller 21st (25:20.79), junior Laura Allbritton 26th (26:13.77), eighth-grader Addyson Barnett 30th (27:04.31) and senior Jazimine Wilson 32nd (27:20.10).

The Class 1A-2A Girls State Championship Race during the 2021 AHSAA Cross Country Championships at Oakville Indian Mounds Park near Moulton is Nov. 6 at 10:30 a.m.

Section — The Lions will send a pair of first-year runners to the AHSAA Cross Country Championships after seventh-graders Taylor Bell and Kerby Brooks.

They qualified as individuals for state by being one of the top-six finishing runners not on the roster of a top-four finishing team during Thursday’s Class 1A-2A Girls Section 4 Race.

Bell finished 16th with a time of 24:05.12 while Brooks was 17th with a time of 24:13.48.

“Kerby and Taylor have been training hard and have been running with intensity. The sectionals was only the second meet of the season that they have run the 3.1-mile course (5K) and they both set new (personal records),” said Section coach Melissa McCutchen. “This is a great accomplishment for our student-athletes and a great accomplishment for our program.”

Meanwhile, Section finished seventh in the girls team standings with a score of 137.

Along with Bell’s and Brooks’ finishes, Ava Barnes finished 37th (29:00.06) for the Lions while JoAnna Newsom was 39th (29:37.72) and Hadley Crawford was 48th (32:05.96) and Ellie Reed was 53rd (36:14.74).

Skyline — The Vikings had two runners race as individuals during Class 1A-2A Girls Section 4 Race. Katie Roach finished 27th (26:49.38) for Skyline while Kaylee Bullock was 52nd (34:00.39). 

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