DOBSON — The starting gun at last week’s cross country meet marked the beginning of an interscholastic sport in Surry County for the first time since March.
It was significantly cooler than most cross country openers, as one would expect when comparing a day in mid-November to one in late August, but that didn’t dampen the runners’ enthusiasm to be back.
North Surry hosted the meet at Veteran’s Park, which is a first for the program.
“We really appreciate the VFW and Veteran’s Park for letting us host the meet there,” said North Surry head coach Joey Slate. “It was a new venue for our conference and we’re so appreciative that they let us literally have the run of the park.”
Joining the Greyhounds at Tuesday’s meet were fellow WPAC members Surry Central, West Stokes and Forbush. Meets are limited by the N.C. High School Athletic Association to four teams this year due to COVID-19.
The boys were up first and did not disappoint. Surry Central’s Hector Morales and Forbush’s Nate Warden separated themselves from the pack and battled the entire race.
Morales pulled ahead in the end and won with a time of 17:44.6. Warden took second less than 11 seconds later.
Only two other runners completed the 5,000-meter run in less than 19 minutes. Both came from West Stokes: Cameron Knox and Greg Grasso. Knox crossed the finish line at 18:13.4 and Grasso at 18:15.9.
North Surry’s top three finishers were the next three to complete the 5K. Isaac Riggs led the Hounds at 19:02.1. He was followed soon after by Jair Gonzalez at 19:13.2 and Ray Pell at 19:15.1.
The final teams scores, the sum of the team’s top five finishes, came down to the wire. West Stokes took the team win with 46 total points. The Wildcats top five finishes were 3, 4, 11, 12 and 16.
North Surry nearly took the win, but fell a point short at 47. The top Greyhounds finished at 5, 6, 7, 14 and 15.
Surry Central took third with 52 points. The five fastest Eagles finished at 1, 8, 9, 10 and 24.
Forbush rounded out the pack with 74 points, recording finishes of 2, 13, 18, 20 and 21.
Final boys results are below:
1. Hector Morales 17:44.6 Surry Central
2. Nate Warden 17:55.0 Forbush
3. Cameron Knox 18:13.4 West Stokes
4. Greg Grasso 18:15.9 West Stokes
5. Isaac Riggs 19:02.1 North Surry
6. Jair Gonzalez 19:13.2 North Surry
7. Ray Pell 19:15.1 North Surry
8. Charlie Hernandez 19:15.6 Surry Central
9. Sebastian Sanchez 19:32.9 Surry Central
10. Eddy Osorio-Ramirez 19:36.4 Surry Central
11. Elijah Bower 19:43.8 West Stokes
12. Jacob Adkins 19:51.1 West Stokes
13. Christian Furno 20:19.6 Forbush
14. Salvador Rodriguez 21:15.2 North Surry
15. Arturo Valle 21:16.2 North Surry
16. Aj Moran 21:19.4 West Stokes
17. Phillip Lowman 21:27.2 West Stokes
18. Ethan Snow 22:53.7 Forbush
19. Luis Valle 23:25.6 North Surry
20. Jackson Gentry 23:48.9 Forbush
21. Jaxson Gray 24:58.8 Forbush
22. Jaysen Smith 25:08.2 Forbush
23. William Erickson 25:19.6 West Stokes
24. Miles Fowler 26:25.5 Surry Central
The girls race was up next. The girls race was closely contested at certain points, and far from it at others.
Forbush’s Bianca Gonzalez took the gold medal at 21:19.1. This was just one second off her time in the 2019 State Championship race.
West Stokes’ Sydney Cockerham and North Surry’s Amelia York were more than a minute behind Gonzalez. The duo came down to the final sprint, which was won by Cockerham by 0.1 second.
It was nearly another minute before another competitor completed the race. This time it was Surry Central’s top performer Abigail Hernandez, who finished at 23:16.
The final team competition was contested between Surry Central, North Surry and West Stokes since Forbush didn’t have five runners. This improved everyone’s point values.
Central and West Stokes each had four competitors finish in the top-10 of points. In the end, it was West Stokes that took the team win with 33 points. The top Wildcat runners earned points at 1, 4, 8, 9 and 11.
The Lady Eagles took second in the meet with finishes at 3, 6, 7, 10 and 17. North Surry took third with 51 points, earning them at 2, 5, 13, 15 and 16.
Final girls results are below:
1. Bianca Gonzalez 21:19.1 Forbush
2. Sydney Cockerham 22:26.7 West Stokes
3. Amelia York 22:26.8 North Surry
4. Abigail Hernandez 23:16 Surry Central
5. Rhyan Sapp 23:52.5 West Stokes
6. Weatherly Reeves 24:04.6 North Surry
7. Lanie Fitzgerald 24:08.8 Surry Central
8. Chesney Norman 24:34.6 Forbush
9. Ella Priddy 25:02.8 Surry Central
10. Sarah Wiendhoft 25:09.3 Forbush
11. Ragan Speer 25:35 West Stokes
12. Mikayla Nixon 26:18.8 West Stokes
13. Wendy Cantor 26:40.5 Surry Central
14. Greyson Orr 26:44.9 West Stokes
15. Sadie Knox 26:58.9 West Stokes
16. Nydia Cabrera 28:05.3 North Surry
17. Rebecca Luzzi 28:42.4 West Stokes
18. Campbell Orr 28:42.4 West Stokes
19. Maddie Creed 28:53.2 North Surry
20. Natalie Slate 29:26 North Surry
21. Mckenzie Dawson 30:03.4 Surry Central
22. Claire Marion 30:12.6 Surry Central
23. Yaira Reyes 30:13.7 Surry Central
Reach Cory on Twitter @MaNewsSports