B-U boys win Festival race; pair of EHS girls place in top 5
ELKINS — Led by Samuel Walker’s first-place showing, the Buckhannon-Upshur boys captured the Mountain State Forest Festival Invitational held Saturday on the Davis & Elkins College Course.
Walker, a senior, cleared the course in a time of 18:40. He was followed by John Marshall’s Mack Allen (18:49), South Harrison’s Carter Bowie (18:53), Lewis County’s Jacob Moore (19:11) and Elkins High School’s Lucas Anger (19:12) to comprise the top five finishers.
The Bucs, who finished with 57 points, had five runners among the top 20 as Julius Hobbs was 10th (19:58), Cory Hamner 15th (20:24), Harrison Walker 18th (20:42) and freshman Jordan Gillum 20th (21:04).
Allegany (Md.) was second in the team standings with 65 points. St. Albans was third with 101 points, while Elkins fourth with 103 points and Lewis County fifth with 130.
The remainder of the field included John Marshall (168), North Marion (194), Notre Dame (213), Tucker County and Clay-Battelle (223), Mountain Ridge (Md.) (280) and Gilmer County (299).
Charlie Smoak was the second Tiger to cross the finish line in seventh place with a time of 19:48. Other EHS finishers included Henry Fry (28th, 21:58), Nathan Whetsell (37th, 22:12), Tyler McKisic (41st, 22:31), Brandon Rossi (50th), Tyler Chewning (62nd), Hunter Shreve (70th), Braxton Kenney (73rd), Antony Dong (77th), Elijah Jones (89th), Ben Auvil (111th) and Jasper Clark (113th).
“I liked our performance today, but I didn’t love it,” Elkins coach Matt Lewis said. “I challenged our guys to race and not just run, I don’t think we accomplished that goal today.”
Holden Young was 19th in a time of 20:55 to pace the Mountain Lions.
Despite not fielding a full squad due to minor injuries, the Elkins High School girls had two runners finish in the top five as Addie Berdine was third in a time of 24:06 and freshman Samantha Sproul fourth with an effort of 24:18. Kiley Edwards also cracked the top 10 with a ninth-place showing in a time of 24:58.
Holly Harper was 36th (29:02) to round out the Lady Tiger competitors.
“Our girls ran with tenacity today,” Lewis said. “Yes we were down a few runners, but those girls just believe in themselves, as do I.”
John Marshall, led by a first-place showing from Zara Zervos in a time of 23:24, took team honors with 40 points.
The Lady Monarchs were followed by Tucker County (87), North Marion (118), Allegany (129), Notre Dame (133), B-U (136), Robert C. Byrd (146), Lewis County (166) and Mountain Ridge (171).
Freshman Jessica Williams was the top finisher for the Lady Bucs in 17th place (26:04). Fellow freshman Alayna Whitehair was 19th (26:25), while Jennifer Williams also finished in the top 30 by placing 27th in a time of 27:49.
Freshman Erin Chambers was the top Tucker County placer in eighth with a time of 24:51. Kristen Hicks followed in 23rd (27:20) and Kate Falls was also among the top 25 by placing 25th in a time of 27:26.
Freshman Hannah Hardy finished one spot outside of the top 25 in a time of 27:31.
Elkins will return to action Saturday at the Charles Point Indian Run, while B-U will compete in the Battle Run invite on the same day.