Cross country runners clock personal bests

Published 3:38 pm Tuesday, September 20, 2022

The Davie cross country team made its second trip of the season to Charlotte’s McAlpine Park for the Hare and Hounds Invitational on Sept. 17. Over 70 teams from North and South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee and Florida were represented.

After racing this course three weeks earlier, the War Eagle harriers were anxious to see how much they had improved. Davie runners claimed 21 personal-record times among 29 finishers.

A total of 39 schools competed in the boys varsity, and the young Davie squad secured third. A senior-laden Lincoln Charter team took home the championship trophy with 67 points. A veteran Sun Valley team was runner-up with 123, while a Davie team with two sophomores and two freshmen among its five scorers was next with 164.  The five Davie scorers all recorded personal-record times over the 5k distance.

Owen Sulecki paced the War Eagle effort with a fourth-place finish in a field of 315 finishers. His time of 16:59 was a personal-best effort by 31 seconds after clocking his previous best of 17:30 the prior week. Tyler Hill knocked 26 seconds off of his previous best to claim 10th place in 17:10. Thomas Essic continued the PR parade with a 16th-place finish in 17:20, 26 seconds better than his previous best. Ethan Lakey grabbed 31st in 17:35, a new PR by 30  seconds. Logan Zuleger rounded out the scoring at 122nd in 19:17, 11 seconds better than his previous best.  Rounding out the Davie finishers were Jackson Sulecki in a new PR of 20:07 and Will Allard in 20:39.

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The varsity girls finished 24th of 42 schools. Lexi Marion and Gracie Spicer led the way as each recorded huge PRs in the field of 300 runners. Marion placed 23rd in 21:21, an improvement of 35 seconds off of her previous fastest time and over 90 seconds faster than she had run on this course three weeks ago. Spicer improved her all-time best mark by 24 seconds as she crossed the line in a time of 21:50 for 46th place. Isabel Kittleson was Davie’s third runner as she finished in 24:31. Raelyn Lankford was next in 25:01. Emilia Marks was the final Davie scorer with a time of 28:11 as she edged out teammate Clara Phelps, who recorded the same time. Stella Frye (28:37) was the remaining Davie runner.   

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The Davie girls had two competitors in the JV race. Reily York (33:17) and Maggie Smith (36:31) completed their first high school cross country 5k race.

In the boys JV race, Davie dashed to 13th place among 41 schools. Leading the way was freshman Brayden Kistner, who shaved 48 seconds off of his previous best effort. His time of 19:59 was good for 66th out of 498 finishers. Noah Shore recorded a personal best of 20:48  as the second Davie runner to cross the line, just a second ahead of Aric Boles (20:49). Hayden Key’s eight-second PR saw him cross the line in 20:54. Caswell Moore turned in a 33-second PR with a time of 21:00. Chris Devicenti notched a 28-second PR in 21:08. Adam Brown was next in 21:32, and he was followed Slade Keaton (21:47) and Jackson Shook, who had a nice debut race in 21:58. Wade Bomar turned in an excellent effort as his time of 22:02 was an improvement of 1:25. Rounding out the Davie effort were Jacob Hannah (23:30), Jacob Patton (PR of 26:43) and Tristen Rissew (27:00).

“We could not have asked for a better effort than we got today,” said coach Rob Raisbeck. “Jeff (Jones) and I were really pleased with the performance of the entire team. Our varsity boys, in particular, just crushed it out there. Each of our top four had PR’s of 25-30 seconds, as did our top two girls. We have been training really hard the last three weeks and then eased up after Tuesday so we had three days to recover for this race. We raced on this course three weeks ago and just about everybody on the team ran significantly faster today. We have a lot of young runners, at least half of the team being freshmen, but they didn’t let their inexperience get in the way. We ran aggressively and with confidence, which we love to see.

“We have one invitational left – Oct. 1 at Hagan Stone Park in Guilford County. Then we pivot to the championship part of the season with the CPC in mid-October. We are excited to watch this young team continue to improve.”