Oak Hall leads local entries in Flrunners.com Invitational

Published: Saturday, September 29, 2012 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, September 30, 2012 at 12:18 a.m.

The area’s cross country teams and runners had a good showing at this weekend’s Flrunners.com Invitational 13 at Chain of Lakes Park in Titusville.

On Saturday, the Oak Hall girls team, Class 1A state runners-up the last two seasons, placed fourth out of 17 teams in the race of champions.

Eighth-grader Lauren Perry led the way for the Eagles, placing 13th with a personal-best time of 18:47.10. Brittney Olinger, The Sun’s four-time reigning girls cross country runner of the year, was 14th with a season-best time of 18:50.10. Grace Blair (20th, personal best 19:03.60), Talia Carlson (70th, 20:28) and Katie Ringdahl (78th, 20:46) rounded out the Eagles’ top-five finishers in the 149-runner field.

Oak Hall, No. 1 in 1A according to to the FACA/flrunners.com rankings, was the only 1A squad in the 17-team race. Estero (No. 1 Class 3A) won, followed by Fort Walton Beach (No. 3 Class 3A). The Eagles actually tied Miami Ferguson (No. 4 Class 4A) for third, but finished fourth by tiebreaker.

“Today was a good effort, we had had some improvements from what we ran two weeks ago,” said Eagles coach Edwin McTureous. “This was definitely the most loaded race we have been in so far this year.

“We performed well today.”

In the boys race of champions, P.K. Yonge’s Garrett Westlake was 28th (16:15.70) out of 183 runners. In the boys invitational race, Joseph Janson of P.K. Yonge, posted a time of 16:29.80 to place seventh, while Eastside’s Carsten Thue-Bludworth clocked a school-record time of 16:37.60 to finish 10th out of 272 runners. The Rams were 21st as a team with the Blue Wave 25th.

Eastside’s Christine Pu was 58th (21:16.20) out of 277 runners in the girls invitational race with the Rams 31st as a team.

P.K. Yonge placed eighth out of 11 teams in the girls unseeded B race, led by Laksmi Arroyo (22nd, 23:33.50) and Caroline Perry (27th, 24:19.30).

On Friday, Columbia freshmen Emma Tucker (20:30.30) and Samantha Zeigus (20:37.10) placed fifth and sixth and led the Tigers to a first-place finish in the girls large school race.

Abby Williams (30th, 22:02.90), Sydni Jones (37th, 22:23.80) and Ashlyn Martin (47th, 22:40.50) rounded out Columbia’s top five finishers in the 159-runner field. The Tigers edged out Stuart South Fork to win the 20-team event.

In other action Friday, Oak Hall placed 12th out of 29 teams in the boys small school race led by Austin Perry, who placed 16th (17:52.50) out of 242 runners. Columbia’s Timothy Pierce posted a time of 18:25.80 to placed 56th out of 202 runners in the boys large school race. The Tigers finished 19th out of 25 teams.

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