Results for fans of Dickson, Kingston and Tishomingo are here.
VELMA — Inspired by her older sisters and races run during her junior-high years, Mandy Sykora looked forward to this event.
Marietta didn’t run at Wildhorse Golf Course in Velma during the regular season, but that didn’t slow Sykora, who surged to an early lead about 100 yards from the start line.
She never looked back, winning the girls Class 3A regional cross country meet Saturday, pacing Marietta to the team title as well. The Lady Indians won with 25 points, 52 ahead of second-place Marlow.
“It feels pretty great” to be champion, Sykora said. “I’ve been looking forward to this ever since I was little because my sisters would always run. It just keeps me pushing harder.”
Sykora described the course.
“It’s pretty good,” Sykora said. “I ran here when I was in junior high pretty much every year.
“Since we ran it so much, we didn’t come here during the regular season, but it’s a great course to run regionals. I think the wind was a little picky at us but I think it’s a pretty great course, a pretty fast course.”
Marietta had five runners inside the top 12. Sykora, Mackenzie Muller, Gracie Cain, Vegas Bell and River Pierce scored points for the Lady Indians.
• 1. Sykora (12:14.00)
• 3. Muller (12:50.44)
• 4. Cain (12:52.81)
• 6. Bell (13:26.59)
• 12. Pierce (13:45.78)
• (15.) Miriam Cecenas (13:53.40)
• (16.) Cynthia De La Torre (13:55.18)
The Indians boys team won, too, the second consecutive year Marietta swept its regional. The Indians won with 18 points, 54 ahead of second-place Marlow.
“I was really happy,” Marietta coach Matt Appelman said. “That was our first main goal of the season, to be regional champions, so we got that done. The kids ran pretty well. The weather wasn’t great, so I was happy with the way they ran.”
Marietta had all five of its runners place in the top seven. Zane Nutter, Chase Waterhouse and Danny Sanchez swept the top three. Bolton Fortune and Trace Stewart finished fifth and seventh, respectively.
The boys team ran in a pack.
“I think it worked well,” Appelman said. “Our front guys didn’t run as hard as they probably would have had we run it normally, so I think it’ll benefit them (this) week.
“I liked what we did.”
• 1. Nutter (17:34.56)
• 2. Waterhouse (17:35.06)
• 3. Sanchez (17:41.00)
• 5. Fortune (17:58.06)
• 7. Stewart (18:30.94)
• (9.) Alex Sanchez (18:38.59)
• (10.) Jesus Fernandez (18:43.59)
Dickson finished third with 89 points.
Clinton Bland, Jeremiah McMahan, Brenton Bland, Austin Parker and Caden Potter scored points for the Comets.
“I am very proud of this team,” Dickson coach Bryce Bell said. “I felt like we ran pretty well. We have some things we can improve on and I believe that we will.
“None of the times were incredibly fast and we drew a very tough regional. The course is deceptively tough. We’ve been cutting back on volume this week and doing more speed work and we started speed work a full week later than we normally do so our legs haven’t really felt super fresh yet.
“We have another week to freshen up and fine-tune some things for the state meet. I am very excited to see how we perform next Saturday in Shawnee.”
• 6. Clinton Bland (18:14.72)
• 11. McMahan (18:46.03)
• 12. Brenton Bland (19:28.50)
• 24. Parker (20:19.34)
• 36. Potter (21:26.03)
The Lady Comets scord 111 points to finish fourth. “We had some girls step up yesterday for us,” Dickson coach Josh Talley said. “Overall as a team, our expectations for it going in, we didn’t meet them but we did enough to get to the state meet. Hopefully at the state meet, we will finish a little bit stronger as a team.”
Sarah Huhman, Meredith Hendry, Clary Donica, Kirstyn Jolly and Harlee Bailey scored points for the Lady Comets.
Talley cited Huhman,” Hendry and Donica as runners who elevated their performances.
“She set the pace for us (Saturday),” Talley said of Huhman.
• 14. Huhman (13:52.06)
• 18. Hendry (14:14.41)
• 20. Donica (14:26.97)
• 27. Jolly (15:02.25)
• 32. Bailey (15:21.81)
Paced by Gracye Werth’s fifth-place finish, the Kingston Lady Redskins scored 173 points and qualified for state.
Werth, Ellie Nickell, Grace Burt, Malory Moody and Rayne Mcniel scored points for the Lady Redskins.
• 5. Werth (13:00.91)
• 26. Nickell (14:57.56)
• 39. Burt (16:01.28)
• 49. Moody (16:58.09)
• 54. Mcniel (18:08.31)
Kingston scored 158 points to finish sixth. RJ Weeks, Matthew O’Steen, Preston Whisenhunt, Tanner Blanchard and Isaac Burns scored points for the Redskins.
• 17. Weeks (19:50.44)
• 29. O’Steen (21:01.78)
• 32. Whisenhunt (21:15.72)
• 38. Blanchard (21:41.65)
• 42. Burns (22:06.38)
Sierra Garrett (16:13.39) and Ashlie Hines (21:11.91) qualified for state as an individual.
(Note: The top seven runners who finish yet are not affiliated with one of seven teams that qualify advance to state as individuals.)