Local 6A teams have strong showing in sectionals

Published 4:24 pm Friday, November 2, 2018

By ALEC ETHEREDGE | Sports Editor

TRUSSVILLE – Chelsea, Helena and Pelham all had unbelievable performances in the Class 6A, Section 3 boys and girls cross country races held at Hewitt-Trussville on Friday, Nov. 2, all three girls teams are headed to the state meet and two of the three boys teams are headed to the state meet.

In the girls race, Pelham finished second as a team, Chelsea finished third and Helena finished fourth. With the top four teams from each section advancing to the state meet, each one will now take part in the state meet on Nov. 10 at Oakville Indian Mounds Park.

Pelham’s Katie Strozier, a senior, was the highest finisher of the three teams, finishing in second with a time of 19:51.94, which was 16 seconds ahead of third place.

Pelham had one other top 10 finisher in Alex Wilkins, who took home seventh with a time of 20:59. 21.

The strength of the Panthers, and the reason they came in second, was their consistency behind that with four runners finishing consecutively from 12th to 15th.

Freshman Sydney Stephenson led that pack with a time of 21:54.61, while Madily Dubose, Brooke Monti and Meredith Bass were just behind. Pelham had one other top 30 finisher in Zitaly Pacheco, who took home 28th.

The Hornets, as they have been all year, were led by Teanna Cason with a finish of fifth thanks to her time of 20:38.78.

Senior Nakia Coleman and freshman Esther Rabenau finished 17th and 18th, respectively, to give Chelsea tow more runners inside the top 20. The final runner to finish inside the top 30 for the Hornets was Avery Thompson with a finish of 26th thanks to her time of 23:56.

Helena’s highest finisher and only top 15 finisher was Ana Watters, who continued an impressive season with an 11th-place finish thanks to her time of 21:32.20.

Freshman Lindsey May was the Huskies’ next highest finisher in 19th, while junior Allison Tanner finished 20th.

A couple of other young runners for Helena had impressive showings as well. Freshman Madison Tsimpides finished in 24th, while seventh grader Ashlynn Beery finished one spot lower in 25th.

Helena and Pelham were able to also qualify their boys teams, while Chelsea will be sending two individual runners to the state meet.

Just like the girls race, the highest local finisher in the boys race came from Pelham as Adam Keller finished in third with a time of 16:38.96.

The Panthers got two other top 20 finishes from T.J. Gennari in 11th and Dominic Fanella in 20th, which was good enough to help the Panthers finish in third as a team to lock up a spot in the state meet.

Helena’s second-place team finish was led by sophomore Brady Barton, who finished in sixth with a time of 16:54.05. The Huskies also got a top-10 finish from junior Talon Pritchard, who grabbed 10th with a time of 17:38. 70.

Blake Childers was able to finish inside the top 20 by taking home 14th with a time of 18:02.03.

Behind that, Gage Pritchard (23rd), Caleb Byers (24th) and Edan Jamieson (29th), all finished inside the top 30 to help lead the Huskies to such a strong team finish.

Chelsea’s team finished just outside of the top four in fifth, putting them one position from the state meet as a team, but the Hornets will have representation from Miles Brush and Cade Neuberger, who were two of the top six runners outside of the automatic qualifiers.

Brush, a freshman, finished in 16th with a time of 18:10.67, while Neuberger, a senior, finished in 19th with a time of 18:21.73.