Union County continued their dominance in cross country with three teams earning state championship honors last Saturday in Clinton.
The Lady Urchins were able to improve on a second place finish in 2009, winning the school’s first state title in girls cross country.
“We don’t have the best natural runners, but we had the best that day and these girls have a lot of guts and heart and I can’t say enough about their effort throughout the year,” EU coach Nathan McLellan said.
Katie Rowan was the top finisher for East Union, placing fifth with a time of 17:25.9. Heather Dillard, Hannah Courtney and Haleigh Snyder finished eighth through tenth respectively, while Denira Shawver finished 12. East Union edged J.Z. George, 44 to 47, to win the title.
“Katie’s been our number one girl all year and she has both the guts and natural ability,” McLellan said. “Heather was another girl that stepped up for us this year. She had a bad knee, so we nursed her through that, and she was an important leader in that race, pulling the girls together.”
The Urchins fell short in their title repeat, falling to J.Z. George by 10 points.
Jose Valle was the top finisher for the Urchins, placing fifth, while Drew Bruce, Cody Poe, Cody Dillard and Brett Rakestraw rounded out the top 10.
West Union also picked up their first girls title, edging county-rival Myrtle by two points.
Savannah Shirley was the first of three Lady Eagles to finish in the top 10. Shirley, one of several junior high runners on the squad, finished in third place with a time of 16:59.7. Samantha Bridges and Mallory Newby finished fifth and sixth respectively.
The win for West Union snapped Myrtle’s three-year win streak at state, but despite finishing second, the Lady Hawks posted three runners in the top 15, led by Halle Knowles in second place.
“They had a good run,” Myrtle coach Chris Greer said. “It was a little let down fur us, but we ran great, had a great times, West Union stepped up and did a good job as well.”
The Hawks picked up their second straight state title in 1A boys, led by Bryan Cook’s overall first place finish.
“It was a big honor for both the team and for Bryan,” Greer said. “We did well and I’m proud of the team.”
The senior finished seven seconds ahead of West Lincoln’s Jay Case, and was one of three Hawks in the top 15, as Justin Pickens finished third and Heriah Dodson sixth.
“He’s a hard worker and he always does what he needs to in practice,” Greer said. “He’s probably one of the most dedicated runners I’ve ever had, and I’m proud of him being able to end his high school career on top.”
West Union’s Hunter Jennings was the top finisher for the Eagles, who finished seventh overall. Ingomar finished in 10th place.
Rounding out county coverage, New Albany finished third in boys, led by Daniel Drummond and fourth in girls, led by Kimberly Hardy in Class 4A.
1A Girls Top 15
1. Andrea Wise, Greenville St. Joe, 16:05.9
2. Halle Knowles, Myrtle, 16:47.5
3. Savannah Shirley, West Union, 16:59.7
4. SamanthaShettles, Myrtle, 17:15.6
5. Samantha Bridges, West Union, 17:18.5
6. Mallory Newby, West Union, 17:27.1
7. Shauna Haney, Potts Camp, 17:34.6
8. Emalee Yielding, Tremont, 17:34.9
9. Amber Cooper, Potts Camp, 17:42.4
10. Emma Mitchell, Resurrection, 17:47.0
11. Rachel Peeler, Myrtle, 17:53.7
12. Jaymie Smith, Resurrection, 18:02.9
13. Clara Sanders, Tupelo Christian, 18:08.0
14. Lexis Leggett, West Lincoln, 18:12.1
15. Kenjayla Dixon, Greenville St. Joe, 18:16.9
Boys 1A Top 15
1. Bryan Cook, Myrtle, 17:47.8
2. Jay Case, West Lincoln, 17:54.6
3. Justin Pickens, Myrtle, 18:09.4
4. Ben Storment, French Camp, 18:12.5
5. Cody Williams, French Camp, 18:17.9
6. Heriah Dodson, Myrtle, 18:23.7
7. Hunter Jennings, West Union, 18:33.8
8. Trevor Wilkerson, French Camp, 18:35.0
9. Kris Roberts, Potts Camp, 18:44.1
10. Jared Case, West Lincoln, 18:52.0
11. Jacob Breeden, Saint Aloysius, 19:07.2
12. Matt Swinford, Potts Camp, 19:09.1
13. Zach Pitts, Tupelo Christian, 19:11.7
14. Dylan Sandidge, Cathedral, 19:11.9
15. Brantley Harris, Potts Camp, 19:19.9
Girls 2A Top 15
1. Latifa Swims, J.Z. George, 15:37.3
2. Marimac Collins, Madison St. Joe, 16:33.9
3. Anna Taconi, Our Lady Academy, 16:42.3
4. Denise Powell, Our Lady Academy, 17:13.4
5. Katie Rowan, East Union, 17:25.9
6. Tiffany Hobbs, J.Z. George, 17:45.5
7. Dandrea Peterson, J.Z. George, 17:50.4
8. Heather Dillard, East Union, 17:56.1
9. Hannah Courtney, East Union, 17:56.3
10. Haleigh Snyder, East Union, 18:01.2
11. Emma Holland, Our Lady Academy, 18:08.7
12. Denira Shawver, East Union, 18:13.1
13. Hannah Weisenberger, Madison St. Joe, 18:25.3
14. Natalie Younger, Madison St. Joe, 18:27.1
15. Nyesha Washington, J.Z. George, 18:35.7
Boys 2A Top 15
1. Justin Davis, Hinds AHS, 17:02.1
2. Tquan Partlow, J.Z. George, 17:36.0
3. Octavis Taylor, J.F. Kennedy, 17:41.5
4. Denarius White, J.Z. George, 17:48.3
5. Jose Valle, East Union, 17:57.7
6. Antonio Washington, J.Z. George, 18:13.1
7. Jabbaria Amos, J.Z. George, 18:19.5
8. Drew Bruce, East Union, 19:39.1
9. Cody Poe, East Union, 18:46.7
10. Cody Dillard, 18:59.9
11. Brett Rakestraw, East Union, 19:01.7
12. Deion Warren, J.F. Kennedy, 19:17.8
13. Johnny Warren, Hickory Flat, 19:24.6
14. Ryan Crandall, Madison St. Joe, 19:36.4
15. Dameond Brown, J.Z. George, 19:44.4
Boys 4A Top 15
1. Travis Jorda, Poplarville, 16:54.7
2. Luke Hatcher, Pontotoc, 17:00.5
3. Blake Hill, Pontotoc, 17:11.2
4. Kaleb Hart, North Pike, 17:15.4
5. Alex Russell, Pontotoc, 17:16.6
6. Bingham Wikoff, Saint Stanislaus, 17:19.5
7. Manuel Grandos, West Lauderdale, 17:38.8
8. Godfrey Fayne, Byhalia, 17:40.2
9. Wyatt Scott, Saint Stanislaus, 17:47.4
10. Cole Payne, Pontotoc, 17:50.1
11. Brayden Timmons, Pontotoc, 17:56.1
12. Daniel Drummond, New Albany, 17:56.6
13. Luke chapman, Center Hill, 17:57.7
14. Jose Rodriguez, Lafayette, 18:01.5
15. Keandre Willson, Raymond, 18:07.6