Baldwin High continued its dominance on the area high school cross country circuit, sweeping both the boys and girls team titles and the individual championships Thursday at the Frontier League meet at Rim Rock Farm.
The Baldwin boys scored 52 points to pace the field, comfortably ahead of second-place De Soto (66). The Baldwin girls had a little more reason for worry, tallying 37 points to nip De Soto by just a two-point margin.
"I thought the kids did just a great job of competing," said Baldwin coach Mike Spielman. "We've kind of talked about all year, the important meets are at the end of the year, and they just stepped up real well.
"They just did a really good job of knowing who they had to beat and getting the job done."
Chris Elniff led the Baldwin charge on the boys side, crossing the line in 16 minutes, 40 seconds to hold off Eudora's Joey Chino, who finished in 16:48.
On the girls side, Baldwin's Heather Garcia won in 14:42, pulling away from Eudora's Brittney Graff (14:55) late in the race.
The ability to fight off stiff challenges from Eudora competitors wasn't the only thing Elniff and Garcia had in common. So was their ability to make it happen on the big final climb on the challenging Rim Rock course.
"Billy Mills Hill. That's the tough one," Spielman said. "Anyone who's run the course knows Billy Mills. They know that one."
Baldwin, Eudora and De Soto will all compete next Saturday at the Class 4A regional meet hosted by Anderson County in Garnett.
Ottawa will be at the Class 5A regional at Topeka Seaman, and Wellsville will be at the Class 3A regional at Central Heights next weekend.
The Delaware Valley League also held its league meet Thursday at Rim Rock. McLouth and Oskaloosa finished seventh and eighth, respectively, on the boys side. Kansas City Christian won the boys title with just 18 points.
Neither area school fielded enough runners to record a team score on the girls side. Jackson Heights won the girls team title with 24 points.
McLouth and Oskaloosa will compete at the Class 3A regional at Riley County next Saturday.