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Plainview girls cross country aims for 19th title at 4A State Championship meet

Beau Bearden
bbearden@gannett.com

Among a bulletin board scattered with newspaper clippings and other mementos is a signed card with the simple phrase, “If it’s to be, it’s up to me.”

The words are from the late Dr. Virgil Trout, who was widely regarded as one of the top speakers of the 20th century. He passed away in 2016, but his words still hold meaning to Plainview High School cross country coach Jerry Naylor.

“That’s a pretty good quote if you think about it,” Naylor said. “Nobody can go out there and take your place. I can’t take you off the course and say you’re not running very well and then you get back on it. That’s what it is right there. Nobody can ever complain about what happens because that’s the truth right there.”

Naylor should know.

He has coached at Plainview for many years and looks to lead the Lady Indians to their 19th state title when they take the course at 11:30 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 4 at Edmond Santa Fe High School.

It won’t just be the girls running though, as the Indians are also looking for a strong finish to the 2020 season.  

“The boys have done really good this year,” Naylor said. “Every boy out there has run better than they’ve ever run. I’m really proud of them, too. 4A boys is just a beast —team wise and everything. Our guys have done really good. We just lose (J.T. Allen), who’s a senior. The rest of them are underclassmen. They’ve run really well this year and they’ve gotten better. They’ve worked hard.”

Plainview juniors Ethan Lollman and Trevor Honeycutt finished in the top 12 on Oct. 24 in Waurika and look to continue their success at state.

The same can be said of the Lady Indians, led by seniors Olivia Heller, Hadyn Hobbs, Jacey Keith, Madie Turner and Katie Wiggs.

“We’ve got a better team than most people because we have seven girls who can run,” Naylor said. “We don’t have two or three that can run. … You don’t go undefeated without working and competing pretty hard. That’s not easy to do. I think that they understand what’s at stake and I think they’ll go up there (to Edmond) and do their very best.”

Plainview will battle Madill and Sulphur’s Carlee Cole for a chance to finish with a perfect 10-0 record this season.

The 4A boys race will follow at 11:50 a.m., highlighted by the Plainview and Madill teams along with Sulphur runners Halen Pannel, Brailyn Vallandingham and Ruben Osornio.

The 3A girls meet is scheduled for 1 p.m., featuring Dickson and Marietta along with Lone Grove’s Hayven Fleitman and Davis’ Daityn Webb.

The 3A boys meet is set for 1:20 p.m., with Lone Grove and Marietta running as a team.