The Hotchkiss girls' cross country team claimed its second consecutive state 2A title Saturday, placing three runners in the top 10 to score 13 points for the win.
The race marked the end of an incredible cross country run for seniors Natalie Anderson and Jennifer Celis.
Anderson placed second with a time of 20 minutes, 32.4 seconds, behind senior Miriam Roberts of Lyons, who won with a time of 19:44.3. Lyons scored 33 points to place second.
Anderson told head coach Kelly Cowan that about the two-mile mark there is a steep downhill. Roberts opened up there, and Anderson realized she wasn't going to catch her, said Cowan, "and she focused on her own race."
Celis matched last year's performance, finishing the course at the Norris Penrose Event Center in Colorado Springs in 21:02.5 to place fourth.
"They're pretty special kids," said head coach Kelly Cowan, referring to their presence as having "another coach on the field. They're both great leaders for the girls. It's hard to find kids like that."
Mae Anderson also finished in the top 10 with an eighth-place time of 21:24.9.
Sophomore Sophia Schelle finished fourth for Hotchkiss and 18th overall with a time of 22:08.1. In her first season of cross country, sophomore Katy Parsons placed 26th overall (22:43.0).
Cowan characteristically brushed off any suggestions of a dynasty. "Who knows what will happen in the future. It's kind of nice, though, to say you did (win the state title) a couple of times."
Junior Andrew Tiedeman led the Hotchkiss men's team, placing ninth with a time of 17:34.2. As a first-year sophomore, Tiedeman placed 10th at state with a time of 17:49.
Tiedeman missed three weeks of competition due to illness and wasn't at full strength at regionals, where he placed third. "Yesterday you could see a big difference," said Cowan. "I was glad to see him finish strong like that."
Tyrell Clock finished 28th with a time of 19:01.8. That time is 20 seconds faster than last year's 30th place finish for Clock, who is a junior. "Tyrell is one who kept improving all year long and finished with his best regional and state performances," said Cowan. "He's a good testament to hard work and dedication."
Junior Bryce Homme rounded out scoring for Hotchkiss after finishing 48th with a time of 19:57.
Freshman Zack Allen completed the 5,000-meter course in 20:54.4 to place 58th, and sophomore Will Drbohlav finished in 21:30.6 to place 68th.
In the men's division, Hotchkiss finished ninth with 81 points. Lyons dominated the race, sweeping the top three places to score six points for the team win.
Other top Western Slope teams included Crested Butte, placing second with 32 points, and Telluride scored 66 points to place sixth.
With no seniors on this year's men's team, Cowan said he looks forward to a successful 2014 season. And there's always track, said Cowan, who is also head coach for the track teams. "I always look forward to that."blog comments powered by Disqus