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Posted: Wednesday, October 31st 2012 at 8:38pm

Cross country: Chestatee sweeps 8-AAAA for first-ever region titles

By Jeff Hart Staff
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Runners take their mark in the boys Region 8-AAAA cross country championships on Wednesday in Flowery Branch.
FLOWERY BRANCH – The Chestatee boys girls swept the Region 8-AAAA cross country meet at the Williams Mill Greenspace course Wednesday.

Both Chestatee teams won in easy fashion.

The boys placed four runners in the top 10 to win with 38 points. Johnson was second with 72 points holding off Stephens County, which had 79 points. Lanier took the fourth spot with 95 points. The top four teams all qualify for the state meet in two weeks in Carrollton.

In the girls race, the Class AAAA fourth-ranked Lady War Eagles dominated placing four runners in the top six to finish with just 25 points. Lanier took second with 71 points, Walnut Grove was third with 92, and Lumpkin County took the final qualifying spot for state with 113 points, holding off Eastside by just six points.

The region titles for Chestatee were the first for each program in the school’s history. Chestatee coach Mark Dunn said it was a solid day.

“We felt confident the girls would win. They have been running well all season. The boys did a great job. They really came out ready to run,” Dunn said. “I just feel happy for the seniors who finally get to experience a region title.”

In the boys individual race, Lanier’s Ervin Martinez won the title with a 19:05. 7 time. Jack Carnes of Chestatee finished in 19:12.4, beating a pair of Stephens County runners, Tristen Powell and Jordan Black, for second place. Gerardo Saurez of Johnson was fifth and Jason Dang of Chestatee was fifth.

Chestatee seniors Jason Dang and Jose Reyes, who finished seventh, said they knew they could win it. And, they are looking for big things at state.

“We had a game plan and we executed it very well,” Reyes said. “Our goal was to have Jack stay with us and then go for it at the end. He ran a great race,” Reyes said.

“We feel like we can finish in the top 10. We’re training hard and we’re ready to go,” Dang said.

In the girls individual race, Chestatee’s Sarah Beth English won the race by a slim one second over teammate Tori Mullinax with a 22:15 time. Deanna Lewis of Stephens County was third, Maggee Wilson of Chestatee was fourth, Walnut Grove’s Miranda Huff was fifth, and Shelby Bennett of Chestatee was sixth.

The top six runners all advance to the state meet, regardless of whether the team advances.

In the boys team competition, Eastside (121), Walnut Grove (140), Lumpkin County (183), Monroe Area (198), and Madison County (253) rounded out the field.

In the girls team competition, Johnson (124) and Stephens County (150) rounded out the field.
Associated Categories: Sports News, High School Sports

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