The Mount Pisgah boys and girls cross country teams both finished fourth on Saturday in the GHSA Class A Private School Championships. This was the best finish for both teams since the varsity programs began in 2004. Senior Katie Strawinski led the girls finishing in eighth place overall with a time of 20:12. Junior Shane Sullivan paced the boy's squad, finishing 10th overall with a time of 16:46.
“Coach [Anthony] Keeton and I couldn't have asked more of either team today,” said head coach Susan Reilly after the race. “Both our boys and girls knew what a privilege it was to be compared to the other successful cross country programs in Class A. Because of that, our teams came ready to compete. Their mindset was good, they were physically prepared, and they were eager to make their school proud. These young athletes are a great representation of hard work, faith and good character, and are very deserving of their success.”
In the boys race Athens Academy finished first scoring only 77 points. Spots two through four were within ten points of one another with Darlington finishing second (125 points), Landmark third (130 points) and Pisgah fourth (135 points). Galloway was 29 points behind the Patriots in fifth place.
After Sullivan’s All-State performance, two more Patriots finished in the top 20 with seniors Grant Hicks (17:13) and Chris Spriggs (17:18) coming in 16th and 19th respectively. Bo Stuart broke 18 minutes for the first time with a 17:45, while Kevin Ginty scored for the team as the 5th man, covering the 5K course in 18:59. Rounding out the top 7 for Pisgah were Conner Clark (19:20) and Nick Poline (20:59).
In the girls race, the Patriots held off Pace by one point to grab the last spot on the podium. The Landmark girls easily defended their 2011 title, with Providence and Darlington taking the 2nd and 3rd podium spots. The battle for the 4th and last podium spot was extreme, with just 4 points separating 4th through 6th. Host First Presbyterian Day finished sixth.
Strawinski led the charge for the Lady Patriots, ending her high school cross country career with a personal record. It was also the first All-State finish for any girls cross country runner at Pisgah. Mattie Millikan was 17th overall in 20:55, succeeding with the girls' goal to place two in the top 20. Alexa Hudgins had a gutsy race, competing all but the first quarter mile of the 5K run with her shoe untied, and still finishing 3rd for the Pisgah girls in 22:03. Katherine Wilkison came up big with a personal record of 22:22, while Alex Brady scored as the 5th runner in 23:43. Rounding out Pisgah's state team were Elizabeth Dworkin (23:44) and Dani Dudas (24:01).
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