Spain Park, Briarwood have good showing at state

Published 12:13 pm Monday, November 16, 2015

By BAKER ELLIS / Sports Editor

MOULTON – There were 12 Shelby County teams in all that competed at the 2015 cross-country state championships at the Oakville Indian Mounds cross-country course. Spain Park and Briarwood represented three of those 12 teams, with Spain Park sending its girls team to state while Briarwood sent both its boys and girl teams.

Spain Park finished third overall in the 7A meet with an average finishing time of 19:28.31, which was also the third-fastest average time across the state and fastest average time of any girls team in the county at the state meet. Sarah Sims McGrath was the Lady Jaguars top finisher with a time of 18:54.97, which was good enough for ninth-place overall in the 7A meet. McGrath was followed closely by classmate Zoe Shore, who finished 12th overall with a time of 19:03.88. Both McGrath and Shore are seniors, and were competing in their last cross-country race along with Emily DiMercurio, who finished 31st overall and Bailey Condone, who finished 41st overall.

Mountain Brook and Hoover were the two 7A teams to finish ahead of Spain Park at the state meet, and coincidentally were also the two teams to beat the Lady Jaguars in the Section 3 meet as well. The top three finishers at the girls 7A meet all came from the same section, and had the three fastest average times of any team across the state regardless of classification. Spain Park beat fourth-place finisher Auburn by three points to hold on to the No. 3 spot.

The boys team from Briarwood finished eighth overall out of 18 teams at the 6A meet while the girls finished 14th. The Lady Lions did not have any runners score in the top 50, as senior Anne Kelly Patrick finished 55th overall with a time of 21:31.54 to lead the girls team.

The boys team had two runners score in the top 30 to lead them to the No. 8 spot. Senior Griffin Oaks finished 22nd overall with a time of 17:00.64, scoring 19 points while sophomore Zack Howard finished with a time of 17:18.74, good enough for 34th overall and 30 points to lead the Lions, who held off ninth-place finisher John Carroll Catholic by 25 points.