Oak Mountain girls win Shelby County meet, sweep event

By ALEC ETHEREDGE | Sports Editor

ALABASTER –It was a clean sweep for the Oak Mountain Eagles and Thompson Warriors at the 2017 Shelby County XC Championship that was held at Veterans Park in Alabaster on Monday, Sept. 25.

Oak Mountain finished first overall in the team standings in both the boys and girls race, while Thompson had runners win the individual title in both races behind Brandon DeMarcus Lee and McKenzie Hogue.

Coming into the event, Hogue improved in each race finishing in third and second to start the season, and continued that trend by getting her first individual victory of the 2017 season.

Her time of 20:17.52 was the slowest of the season so far—a season that marks her first as a varsity runner with the Warriors—but it didn’t matter, as she was able to win the championship and pick up her third consecutive top-3 finish.

Just behind Hogue in second was Pelham’s Katie Strozier with a time of 20:56.20, who came into the race with finishes of 24th and 12th to start the season. She tied her highest finish as a cross country runner, which came last year in the same event and the section championship, by finishing in second.

Oak Mountain dominated the rest of the top 10 as Evie Bell, Nicole Payne and Kate Van Beek finished in third, fourth and fifth, respectively; and Emma Grace Phillips and Anna McGowan finished in seventh and 10th, respectively.

The Eagles also had four more runners finish in the top 20 as Adrienne Cooley took 16th, Olivia Hanum took 17th, Sierra Jones took 18th and Savannah Michael took 19th, which led to a dominating team performance of 23 points.

It was so dominating that the Eagles finished 47 points ahead of Briarwood’s 70 points in second.

Briarwood was consistent in the race as well with seven runners finishing inside the top 32 led by Adrienne Goolsby in 12th and Anna Beth Hild in 15th.

Goolsby finished the race with a time of 22:41.40, while Hild finished with a time of 22:57.69.

The other top 10 spots were filled by Helena’s Abigail Ford in in sixth with a time of 21:32.00, Pelham’s Meredith Bass in eighth with a time of 21:58.52 and Helena’s Ana Watters in ninth with a time of 22:00.25.

After Briarwood in the team standings, Thompson finished in third, Helena in fourth and Chelsea in fifth.

The Hornets were led by Teanna Cason in 14th with a time of 22:55.85 and also had two other finishers in the top 31 thanks to Nakia Coleman (25th) and Riley Abston (31st).

Shelby County’s Mary Moore also had a strong showing at the event finishing in 11th with a time of 22:19.30.