Sharks’ boys, girls place third at Chiefland meet

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By Sean Arnold

The Cedar Key cross country teams didn’t quite hit their potential, according to head coach Carrie Tomlin, but their effort was good enough for a pair of top-3 finishes.

The Sharks’ pair of varsity squads each placed third at a 5K meet at Chiefland Middle High School on Sept. 21.

The Lady Indians took first behind a No. 1 overall finish by eighth-grader Lauren Jones (20:44), while Williston edged out CMHS to prevail on the boys’ side. Trenton notched second place in the girls’ race.

Eight schools competed at the event.

Brandon Bowling (22 minutes, 56 seconds) led the Shark boys with a ninth-place finish out of 36 varsity boys’ competitors. Jyri Jackson (No. 13, 24:30), John Boyle (No. 14, 25:13), Chris Neal (No. 18, 26:22), Garrett Campbell (No. 21, 26:53), Alexander Topping (No., 23, 27:36) and Cole Bentley (No. 24, 27:38) placed inside the top 25, while Jaden Collins, Mickey Beckham, Anthony Arroyo and Gabriel Lauer rounded out the team’s scoring.

Mackenzie Kirkbride (27:55) paced her Lady Sharks at 12th place. She was followed by fellow CKS runners Makalynn Bowling (No. 14, 29:26), Tamela Greenhaw (No. 20, 32:23), Alexis Crum, Haiden Simpson and Gwen Zeigler.

“Our kids did not run well,” Tomlin said. “It’s hot. This course is, I think, a little long, so our times are always a little slow here.

“They worked hard.”

Lady Indians Banner Hodge (No. 4, 25:39), Jaycie Anderson (No. 5, 25:57) and Jolie Anderson (No. 6, 25:58) finished in the top six with Jones to help life CMHS to the win. Lily Macarthur (No. 13, 29:21), Tabitha Welch (No. 16, 30:06) and Eleanor Frields (No. 17, 30:41) also finished in the top 20 for the Lady Indians.

“I just try to stick to my pace and not get worn out at the start,” Jones said.

Bell’s Tristan Townsend won the boys’ event with a time of 19:05, while Luke Stockman topped the Chiefland boys at 20:49 for a third-place finish. Stockman was joined by fellow Indian boys Dylan Cochran (No. 7, 22:13), Brandon Strong (No. 12, 24:22), Donovan Simoga (No. 17, 25:44), Jonathan Cannon (No. 22, 27:27), Bereket Raymer, and Drummond.

For the Williston boys, Matt Catino placed third overall with a time of 20:39. Logan Armstrong, Luis Garcia and Christian Duran all finished in the top eight for the Red Devils.

Cedar Key hosts a meet on Oct. 5.