Winder-Barrow’s Matilee Rogers cruised to a first-place finish — while Apalachee’s girls nabbed the team title for a second straight year — and the Bulldogg boys dominated their way to the team victory with six top-10 finishers Saturday, Sept. 25, in the Best of Barrow meet at Apalachee High School.
The friendly meet that was slightly shorter than a traditional 5K featured AHS, WBHS and Barrow Arts and Sciences Academy (BASA), which is in its first season of varsity competition.
Rogers, the talented junior who has established herself as one of the top runners in the area and state, started fast Saturday morning and was never seriously challenged on her way to the win. But a trio of Apalachee runners — junior Averie Akin, sophomore Hailey Tedder and senior Abby Zapata — followed behind her to lift the Lady Wildcats to the team victory over Winder-Barrow. Sophomore Katie Harper finished sixth, and senior Samantha Hauff finished 10th to give Apalachee five top-10 finishers. The Lady Bulldoggs got a fifth-place finish from sophomore Victoria Guzman and a ninth-place finish from Brianna Boyle.
BASA was without its top runner in sophomore Smita Carroll. Sophomore Emma Busbee finished seventh to lead the Lady Blazers, while sophomore teammate Devan Howard took eighth place.
Winder-Barrow was in complete control of the boys’ race, locking down the top four spots with Parada-Rubio leading the way. The senior was followed by juniors Daniel Laird and Kyle Kehoe and senior Noah Boyd, while senior Brian Gaddy came in eighth and junior Isaac Sanders finished 10th.
Apalachee brothers senior Austin Sigman and junior Luke Sigman finished fifth and sixth, respectively, to help secure second place overall for the Wildcats. BASA sophomore Michael Fletcher paced the Blazers with a seventh-place finish, and sophomore teammate Jacob Carruthers was ninth.
All three schools will be back in action Saturday, Oct. 2, in the Winder-Barrow Invite at Russell Middle School. The large meet will be split between championship and regular races for both boys and girls. Races are scheduled to begin at 7:45 a.m.