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Smoak leads EHS runners at Ritchie invite

ELLENBORO — The Elkins Tigers would put their legs to the test Saturday at the Ritchie County Invitational at North Bend State Park.

Charlie Smoak would keep consistent throughout the race to finish in the runner-up (16:50.5) to defending state champion Carter Lipscomb of Doddridge (15:48). Fellow junior Luke Anger also made the podium finishing 18th (18:01), followed by Tyler McKisic 54th (19:45), Brandon Rossi 56th (19:47), Tyler Burda 57th (19:48), Chris Fry 73rd (20:31), Hunter Shreve 77th (20:44) and Jasper Clark 150th (25:44) to round out the EHS participants in the 174-runner field.

Doddridge took the team title with 70 points, followed by Bridgeport 83, Ritchie County 97, East Fairmont 1123, Parkersburg South 131, Williamstown 158, Elkins 162, Wheeling Central 230, Wirt County 244, St. Mary’s 255, John Marshall 283, Webster County 309, Robert C. Byrd 342, North Marion 374, Clay County 427, while Clay-Battelle, Tyler Consolidated, Wood County Christian, Ravenswood, Parkersburg Catholic, Trinity Christian, Point Pleasant, Lincoln, Braxton County, Paden City and Magnolia all had incomplete teams.

“The boys were quite strong and really raced the course well,” said Tigers coach Matt Lewis said. “I really feel they are getting stronger each race and Charlie is really learning how to run out front.”

Samantha Sproul led the EHS girls by finishing 16th on the podium (22:04). She was followed by Natalie Sutton 40th (23:39), Kiley Edwards 56th (24:22), Holly Harper 64th (24:46) and Kaia Miller 73rd (25:19). In the 138-runner field.

Williamstown captured the meet with 50 points, followed by East Fairmont 102, Doddridge County 110, John Marshall 124, Bridgeport 135, St. Mary’s 146, North Marion 153, Ritchie County 205, Elkins 219, Parkersburg South 230, Ravenswood 253, Webster County 323 and RCB 336 and Lincoln 375.

Trinity Christian, Wood County Christian, Braxton County, Tyler Consolidated, Wirt County, Clay-Battelle, Wheeling Central, Paden City, Clay County had incomplete squads.

“The girls were missing Addie (Berdine) and it certainly reflected in our overall team score,” said Lewis. “Overall though, we ran well and we’re getting closer to being in peak condition.

Elkins was set to run at Tucker County on Tuesday, but due to COVID-19 color coding, the Tigers will be unable to attend.

EHS will now compete in the Big 10 Championship set for Oct. 14 in Grafton.

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