Commonwealth Journal

November 4, 2013

Alyssa Hyden defends her regional crown

Pulaski Co. teams finish as runner-ups

By MICHAEL CHILDERS, CJ Correspondent
Commonwealth Journal

Monticello — For the second straight year, Pulaski County freshman Alyssa Hyden came away with a regional title after winning the Class AAA Region 7 Championship race on Saturday afternoon at Cave Lake Park in Monticello.

Hyden, after winning in the fall of 2011, came away with her second regional title in a row after cruising to a first place finish in the girls’ race. Hyden’s winning time was 19:51, which was four seconds ahead of Madison Central’s Ivanna Sabino, who finished in the second position.

The Lady Maroons finished second in the team standings with 54 points. Madison Central won the meet with a race-low 28 points, which was their second consecutive regional championship in a row.

“Our competition was tough, our competition was fast, and our competition was hungry for the trophy, as we were,” Lady Maroons coach Nancy New said. “We knew that in order to run competitively, we had to conquer the hill, conquer the first mile. When the gun sounded, Alyssa Hyden and Devin Mayfield took the lead and kept that lead all the way to the one-mile marker on top of the hill.”

“The Lady Maroons ran amazingly well on Saturday with five of the seven runners setting season personal records,” New added. “These girls have faced every race this season with focus and determination. When the score was tallied on Saturday, we knew that we were not region champions; however, we learned some things:  we are a team, we set PRs every race, and we can accomplish our goals.”

Pulaski County seventh-grader Devin Mayfield crossed the line in the third spot in a time of 20:26. Teammate Sydney New finished 12th with a clocking of 21:30.

Southwestern’s top finisher was Ashley Phelps, who claimed the 14th spot with a time of 21:46. The Lady Maroons’ Sarah Burton rounded out the top 16.

For second-place Pulaski County, Madi Rodgers finished 28th, Raegan Ruby took the 29th spot, and Jean Weaver claimed the 35th position.

For the Lady Warriors, Keona Phelps finished 22nd and Skye Combs crossed the line in the 46th position. Southwestern only had three runners, so they did not have runners to qualify towards the team title.

The Pulaski County boys’ team, who scored 48 points, took the runner-up spot in the team standings, finishing second to Madison Central’s 24 points. Southwestern finished in the sixth spot with 160 points.

Brennan Fields, of Madison Central, claimed the top spot of all the runners in the race, finishing first with a time of 16:22. Defending regional champion Mason Blevins, last year’s regional champion, claimed the runner-up position with a time of 16:44.

“I am very proud of our boys, we went out and competed and that’s all I wanted them to do,” Pulaski coach David Evans said. “Madison Central ran an exceptional race and they are a podium team at next Saturday’s State meet.”

“Our boys need to realize that they are still a podium team,” Evans added. “We had a 59-second time gap and that’s what we need at State.  Our program will have a big hole to fill next year without Mason Blevins, Morgan Stevens, and Austin Hyden; they have been staples on our team for the past five seasons and they will be missed next year.”

Southwestern’s top runner was junior Jordan Carrington, who finished seventh with a time of 17:16.

Pulaski County had four runners finish in spots 10 through 13 – Austin Hyden (10th), Brennan Perkins (11th), Sam Smith (12th), and Morgan Stevens (13th). Matthew Crawford finished 21st, while Duncan Finch crossed the line in the 34th spot.

The Warriors’ remaining runners were: Spencer Brainard (18th), Matthew Jones (36th), Daulton Ramsey (37th), Logan Randall (64th), and Tanner Harris (65th).

Pulaski County’s boys’ and girls’ teams will compete in the KHSAA Cross Country State Meet this Saturday at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington.

•••

MONTICELLO – Berea swept the boys’ and girls’ championships in the Class A Region 6 Championship on Saturday morning at Monticello’s Cave Lake Park.

The Somerset boys’ team finished sixth with 119 points. The Berea Pirates had a race-low 43 points on the day.

Tristan Krause was the top finisher for the Briar Jumpers, coming home in the ninth spot. Krause’s time was 19:13.

Logan Sutton finished 22nd for Somerset, while teammate Seth Bennett crossed the line in the 24th position. Grant Gover and Austin Calhoun finished back-to-back with 37th and 38th place finishes, respectively.

On the girls’ side of things, Berea defeated Williamsburg by a 12-point margin to earn the regional title.

For the Lady Jumpers, Shelby Foster finished 23rd, while Hannah Smith came home in the 24th position.