The defending Class 4A state champion in cross country, Chapman’s Taylor Briggs added her first gold medal of the season as she took the high school girls division with a 19:31.6 time in the 5K run.
Abilene’s Sydney Burton finished second with a time of 22:16.3 while Heidi Grimmett of Marion was third with a time of 23:18.7.
Briggs and Burton ran side by side for most of the first mile before Briggs pulled in front going up a steep hill on the Great Life Abilene Golf Course.
“Sydney is a competitor and she went out and competed especially that first mile,” Abilene head coach Andy Cook said. “She was going out to compete. I am really proud of her. She has some work to do on her second and third mile but she is in great shape. Two of our top four or five girls were out today for one reason or another and that made a huge difference.”
Chapman’s Maddie Elliott finished fourth at 24:00.6 while Abilene’s Annie Bathurst crossed in seventh place in 24:52.1
“For the first meet of the season, I am very pleased,” Chapman head coach Cindy Zumbrunn said. “We had some great performances from everyone, as they really came through with running some great races with great finishes. We had six runners not compete today, most due to illness. Hopefully, we can get everyone healed and healthy soon.”
Chapman senior Aaron Modrow set the pace in the boys’ race only to have Collin Oswalt take the lead near the end of the first lap. Oswalt won with a time of 16:37.3 while Modrow grabbed the second place medal at 17:33.1.
Abilene’s Aaron Geissinger finished in eighth place in 19:40.2 while teammate Lucas Cook was right with him throughout the run and finished ninth at 19:50.6.
“Aaron and Lucas ran the plan that we asked them to,” coach Cook said. “They hit their targets and the times and they really competed that last mile.”
Freshman Thurman Geissinger placed 13th in his first high school meet with a time of 20:50.06.
“Honestly, Thurman and Damian Hartman and Austin Wuthnow also did a nice job today,” coach Cook said. “We just have to work our way up. We are in a good place, just got to get better.”
In middle school competition, Wamego’s Lily Brecheisen won the seventh grade girls two-mile run with a time of 15:06.7. Abilene’s Marie Ramos-Day finished 12th for the Lady Longhorns.
It was a clean sweep by Wamego in the seventh grade competition as Harrison Cutting won the boys two-mile run in 12:39.0. Adam Weishaar crossed the finish line in 12th place for Abilene with a time of 14:34.6.
Abilene’s Kendra Jantz ran second place in the eighth grade girls’ two-mile run in a time of 14:27.0. Kristen Stroda ran ninth and Randi Longenecker finished 10th.
In the boys’ race, Abilene’s Grant Waite finished a close third place behind Jonathan Cutting of Wamego and Damion Jackson of Southeast of Saline. Waite’s time was 12:11.5 Chapman’s Chris Falls finished ninth.