Cyclones cross country teams have racked up the miles
Published 8:52 am Thursday, October 8, 2015
This season, the Elizabethton High School cross country teams have been traveling far distances, and that is not just on the course.
In search of a bigger challenge, the Cyclones have headed to many places outside the local area, such as Knoxville and Swannanoa, N.C. to compete in large meets as they prepare for the end of season runs.
“We have been traveling this year more than we have in the past,” EHS coach Amber Abel said before Wednesday’s practice. “We have been to some bigger meets. Our goal was to see harder and faster competition earlier in the year.
We were also looking for a variety of courses,” she added.
In September, the group of harriers scooted over to Knoxville, where they competed in two events.
On Sept. 5, the Cyclones participated in the Victor Ashe Park Fall Classic. There, Lady Cyclones’ Heather Feuchtenberger finished in the top 20 in the 5K meter run, with a time of 22:54.55, while boy’s runner Harrison Wright finished at 42, with a time of 19:25.10.
The Cyclones returned to Knoxville again on Sept. 12, when they competed in the Cherokee Classic. For the girls, Feuchtenberger had the best time again. She finished in 50th out of 214 runners as she recorded a time of 21:58.03. Maci Shell followed four places behind, with a time of 22:08.74.
On the boy’s side of the course, Wright led the way, finishing in 84th out of 278 competitors. He recorded a time of 18:36.57, while teammate Andy Johnson finished in 92nd, with a time of 18:49.05.
On Sept. 19, the teams went outside the state, as they took part in the Asheville XC Carnival in Swannanoa, N.C., where they recorded some of top finishes.
For the Lady Cyclones, Lauren Pilkton grabbed the 11th position beating out 63 other girls as she posted a time of 21:54. 87. Maci Shell came in 15th with a time of 22:22.54. As a team the Lady Cyclones finished in fourth. Wright was able to grabbed the 20th place finish with a time of 18:58.06. Teammate Luke Collins, who transferred to Elizabethton High School this year, finished with a time of 19:18.25, which was enough to grab the 25th spot. Collins should be used to long distances after hiking the entire Appalachian Trail this year.
To finish off September, the teams competed in the 24th Annual Bristol Cross on Sept. 26. While there, Shill recorded the best time for the girls with a time of 22:49.80, giving her a 29th finish.
For the boys, Wright finished in 63rd, with a time of 19:18.00, while Collins followed in at 68th.
This season, the boys, with just six runners, have had to overcome being small in numbers, Abel said.
“Early in the season, they all decided to come together and overcome that,” Abel said. “They are like a group of friends that push each other.”
Next up for the Cyclones will be the 43rd Trailblazer Invitational in Gray on Saturday, before competing in the Three Rivers Conference meet on Oct. 20 at the Doe River Gorge.