Cardinals claim first place in Northwest 1A Cross Country event
Williams, Hays finish one-two for East WilkesWednesday - August 24, 2005
BY TOMMY FLEMING
Wilkes Journal-Patriot staff
RONDA -- Running the home course paid big dividends for the East Wilkes girls cross country team during the first meet of the young season.
Senior Amanda Williams and freshman Anna Hays finished one-two to lead the Cardinals to first place in the Northwest 1A Conference meet Wednesday afternoon in Ronda.
East Wilkes tallied 29 points while South Stokes claimed second (48), West Wilkes third (54) and Alleghany fourth (103).
On the boys side, South Stokes placed five runners in the top six to easily take top honors with 17 points. West Wilkes, with two runners in the top 10, obtained second (58) while East Wilkes snagged third (73) and Alleghany fourth (100).
"This was a mandatory conference meet. It's a tough course which was run on a hot and humid day. Recorded times are not a true reflection this early in the season. The course has a good variety," said Anita Tharpe, East Wilkes Coach.
"Kayla Jones is our most improved runner. She finished in our (East Wilkes) top five today to account for team points. Kayla Lawrence finished seventh but she is not where she needs to be. She has God-given talent and will get in shape real quick."
Williams finished first with a time of 23:29 with Hays following close behind with a mark of 23:35. The duo jumped out in the lead early and never relinquished reins.
"I am very happy to have finished first. I think we had an advantage since this is the course we run everyday in practice. We knew when to run hard," Williams noted. "Anna and I got ahead and stayed ahead to set the pace. We pushed each other. Our team was impressive as we had five runners in the top 10. It's great to have girls on your team that want to run hard."
East Wilkes sophomore Kayla Lawrence finished seventh (26:32) while teammates Tiffany Smith (9th, 28:28) and Kayla Jones (10th, 28:44) rounded out the top 10.
The West Wilkes senior duo of Amanda Davis (4th, 25:10) and Lauren Amick (5th, 26:02) ran a smooth race on the tough terrain to lead the young Blackhawks. Sophomore Leah Treadaway, the only other returnee for West Wilkes, finished 11th with a time of 28:55. Freshman Meredith Staley claimed 16th (29:48), Staci Roberts 18th (30:58) and Danielle Cooper 22nd (32:44) on the afternoon.
"Amanda Davis is training hard and has not missed practice. A lot of seniors get a little lax and become content with their previous accomplishments, but not Amanda. She strives to always do her best. Lauren Amick stuck close to Amanda to finish 5th. Lauren is still not in the best of shape. Once she gets there, Lauren will be a real threat to our conference. She just has to get her confidence back," said Mary Kay Wright, West Wilkes Coach.
"Leah Treadaway finished well in 11th place. Leah is also just starting to get in shape. She continues to improve. Meredith Staley was a surprise finishing 16th. This was her first 5K and she did a tremendous job. Staci Roberts and Danielle Cooper finished their first 5k also. These two young ladies will help us greatly in upcoming meets. This is a very confident group."
South Stokes senior Sam Brinson, last year's fourth place finisher at the state meet, staked claim to first place with a time of 19:05. The Saurus snagged second, third, fifth and sixth places to win the boys race with ease.
The West Wilkes sophomore duo of Tommy Huffman (7th, 21:26) and Brandon Layell (10th, 21:47) paced the Blackhawks. Aaron Yates crossed the finish line 12th (21:53), while Dustin Serrano (14th, 22:23) and Alston Billings (15th, 22:25) concluded the scoring for West Wilkes.
"This was a hard course that was real hilly. Most of our team finished in the top twenty. For our first meet, that was pretty good. I'm proud of all the guys. No one gave up," said Huffman. "To improve as a team, we need more practice and motivation. For me to improve, I need a lot more running and help from my coaches."
The East Wilkes senior tandem of Derek Cleary (8th, 21:34) and Elliott Johnson (9th, 21:38) lead the charge for the home standing Cardinals. Sophomore Ethan Shepherd (13th, 22:18), junior Hunter Chambers (21st, 24:10) and senior Billy Brewer (22nd, 24:46) rounded out the scoring for the Cards. Senior Drew Holbrook (32nd, 27:22) and tall freshman Brandon Barker (38th, 35:36) ran their first 5K race.
The boys finished third behind a strong South Stokes team and a solid West Wilkes squad. "I was pleased with how the boys ran in a pack," Tharpe said. "Elliott finished in the top 10. Derek was tight coming up the hill the second time. Ethan paced himself too much. Hunter and Billy are first time runners. We must get in better shape and concentrate on longer distances. The last mile stretched the boys out."
Adam Foster sailed across the final line in 17th (23:06) while Caleb Triplett ended with a mark of 23:23 to take 19th for West Wilkes. Freshman Brody Reid (29th, 26:22) and Rusty Stanley (33rd, 28:18) rounded out the Blackhawks contingent.
"The West Wilkes boys team ran super. With two sophomores (Tommy Huffman in 7th and Brandon Layell in 10th) placing in the top 10, the other team members (all freshman) followed suit. Aaron Yates was a real standout. His 12th place finish was unexpected. He ran very smooth and relaxed. Dustin Serrano placed 14th and Alston Billings finished in 15th place. This first race was good experience for these five top West Wilkes finishers," said Wright. "They will continue to get better as they compete in more races. Adam Foster and Caleb Triplett also finished strong. There were a few mistakes made in the race. They were all real nervous and their running style was not very relaxed. It was a good start for a new team of dedicated athletes. I am very proud of all of them for their 2nd place finish."
Girls Northwest 1A Conference Cross-Country results - 8/24/2005:
1. East Wilkes (EW) 29, 2. South Stokes (SS) 48, 3. West Wilkes (WW) 54, 4. Alleghany (A) 103. 1. Amanda Williams (EW) 23:29, 2. Anna Hays (EW) 23:35, 3. Elizabeth Baker (SS) 24:53, 4. Amanda Davis (WW) 25:10, 5. Lauren Amick (WW) 26:02, 6. Cansas Bass (SS) 26:10, 7. Kayla Lawrence (EW) 26:32, 8. JoAnna Davis (SS) 27:45, 9. Tiffany Smith (EW) 28:28, 10. Kayla Jones (EW) 28:44, 11. Leah Treadaway (WW) 28:55, 13. Dana Prevette (EW) 29:23, 15. Brandy Jones (EW) 29:43, 16. Meredith Staley (WW) 29:48, 18. Staci Roberts (WW) 30:58, 22. Danielle Cooper (WW) 32:44, 24. Lindsay Tharpe (EW) 34:31, 27. Ashley Mastin (EW) 35:31.
Boys Northwest 1A Conference Cross-Country results - 8/24/2005
1. South Stokes (SS) 17, 2. West Wilkes 58, 3. East Wilkes 73, 4. Alleghany 100.
1. Sam Brinson (SS) 19:05, 2. Adam Cardwell (SS) 20:01, 3. Brandon Manval (SS) 20:09, 4. Gerson Cuevas (A) 20:47, 5. Tim Gribble (SS) 20:59, 6. Zach Agee (SS) 21:00, 7. Tommy Huffman (WW) 21:26, 8. Derek Cleary (EW) 21:34, 9. Elliott Johnson (EW) 21:38, 10. Brandon Layell (WW) 21:47, 12. Aaron Yates (WW) 21:53, 13. Ethan Shepherd (EW) 22:18, 14. Dustin Serrano (WW) 22:23, 15. Alston Billings (WW) 22:25, 17. Adam Foster (WW) 23:06, 19. Caleb Triplett (WW) 23:23, 21. Hunter Chambers (EW) 24:10, 22. Billy Brewer (EW) 24:46, 29. Brody Reid (WW) 26:22, 32. Drew Holbrook (EW) 27:22, 33. Rusty Stanley (WW) 28:18, 38. Brandon Barker (EW) 35:36.