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Archive for Sunday, September 8, 2002

LHS boy, FSHS girl take titles

Lions’ McClain, Firebirds’ Valencia claim crowns

September 8, 2002

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— Lawrence had a pair of individual winners at the Overland Park Aquinas Cross Country Invitational Saturday, while the Lawrence High boys claimed the team title.

LHS seniors Dylan McClain and Andy Struble went 1-2 in the boys race, pacing the Lions to 56 points, 14 better than second-place Shawnee Mission Northwest. McClain ran 16:15 for the 5K race, while Struble was 13 seconds behind.

"I'm very pleased with all five of our scoring runners," LHS coach Dick Reamon said. "We expected the first four to be quite good."

Senior John Zehr was eighth, followed by Harry Swartz at 16. Reamon praised fifth runner Drew Vogel, who finished 29.

"We know we've got some talent up top. Now what we have to do is establish the scoring runner all the way through," Reamon said.

Free State was fourth with 90 points, paced by Hiral Bhakta and Adrian Ludwig, who were third and fourth, respectively.

The Firebirds were third on the girls' side with 99 points, paced by individual winner Alysha Valencia, a freshman who covered the two-mile course in a blistering 11:40. Shawnee Mission Northwest won with 38 points.

"Alysha Valencia did a great job for her first race," FSHS coach Steve Heffernan said. "It is fun to watch the emergence of a great runner and more fun when she is wearing your team's uniform."

Mallory Richardson, 16th, Maggie Brooke, 24th, Robyn Lee, 26 and Allison Yoder, 30th, rounded out Free State's top five.

The Lions' girls team was fourth, 14 points behind Free State. Meg Gentry was Lawrence's top runner, finishing eighth, followed by Lauren Davis (21), Jenni Beasley (22), Megan Johnson (28), and Raya Bowden (34). Bowden had played a club soccer game at 8 a.m. Saturday, then zipped over to the course just in time for the start of the girls' race.

"I assure you, when she is rested we can expect some really significant things from her," Reamon said.

LHS races Saturday at Topeka West, while Free State is off until the Jayhawk Invitational at Rim Rock Sept. 21.

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