PARIS Saturday’s Class A state cross country championship at the new Bourbon County cross country course did not feature a podium team or individual finish from any area athletes, but it was the end of some noteworthy careers.
Seniors Amelia Oldfield of Bath County placed 35th in 22:30.65 and Krista Perry of Morgan County was 65th in 23:15.43. Neither ran as well as she had hoped, but both passed several runners in the home stretch to mark a positive ending to their impressive careers.
After competing in three previous state meets, in which she finished 42nd, 94th and 158th, Oldham knew this was her last high school 5K.
“Strategy-wise, I was just going to try to pace off the other girls around me, because I'm not very good at pacing myself, I just go off what's around me. So, that was kind of my thing. Just get some girls during the race and stay with them,” Oldfield said. “And the first half of the race, place-wise I was pretty far back and I didn't really feel too good, but once I got to about a mile left, I was like this is my last cross country race ever, maybe. It's my senior year, so I just got to go and I tried to push a little bit and I passed a couple girls at the end. And so, I was just happy for finishing strong."
Perry, younger sister of 2016 state champion Kailee Perry, also closed out her cross country career on Saturday. Krista Perry had finished 95th, 50th, 48th, 10th and sixth, in five previous appearances.
"I used to be better when I was younger in cross country, but I'm more of a track athlete for now. I just run cross country for fun, and to stay in shape and do it for the team. But, I'm happy with how things ended," Perry said.
"Normally I try to start out pretty decent after a mile and half, and then die out. I wanted to try to keep the same pace, but that was not the case," she added. "I tried to stay with the front pack. It was not exactly how I wanted the race to go. I didn't' run the best I could, I don't think. I ended up tiring myself out halfway through because I think I started too fast. I was trying to kick it in at the end, I have a pretty good kick (and) I had a decent finish, I ended up passing people at the end."
West Carter's Elizabeth Middleton was another state-meet veteran. She finished between Oldfield and Perry in 42nd with a time of 22:41.45. In her four previous races, she placed 68th, 10th, ninth and seventh. However, Middleton is only a junior and will have another shot next year.
Menifee County freshman Brevon Ricker led the area boys in their 5K. He finished 100th in 19:35.31. Bath County senior Sammy Bodine was next at 116th in 19:51.90. Bodine's teammate senior Hunter Middleton claimed 127th in 20:03.27. Isaac Owens represented West Carter and placed 214th in 22:54.12.
Morgan County had a team entrant. The Cougars finished 33rd with 912 points.
Noah Pack paced the squad in 189th with a time of 21:58.18. The team's lone senior, Spencer Bolin, placed 202nd in 22:26.47, while Jeremy Pack was 217th in 23:08.27, Isaac Wright was 221st in 23:16.01 and Kye Havens was 231st in 23:52.77.
Louisville Holy Cross was the boys' team champ for the third straight year. The Cougars recorded 61 points. St. Henry District was second with 83 points, followed by Beechwood with 158 points.
Louisville Holy Cross also had the top two individuals. Josh Meiman won in a time of 16:16.95, while last year's champ D.K. Schnieders was second in 16:36.83. Connor Hayes of Lexington Christian was third in 16:43.09.
Bath County's girls had the day's best finish, placing 13th with 399 points. It has been a steady climb for the Lady Cats. It was the fifth straight appearance for coach Robin Tolle's group. Last year's squad was 14th, while the 2018 team was 19th. Bath County's best recent finish came in 2017, when it placed seventh. The 2016 Lady Cats also placed 18th in the Class AA meet.
“I was very happy with my team's performance at the state meet this year, considering how questionable the beginning of the season was with how we would be approved to start and end,” Tolle said. “I was very proud of the girls' team and how hard they worked this season. They set a goal of winning the region and I was so happy for them to reach their goal. Their 13th-place state-meet finish was close to where we anticipated the team to score, as we were hoping to be in the top 15.”
Senior Hadley Alderman was second among the Bath County runners finishing 86th in 24:06.28. Madison Mabior was next in 89th in 24:11.41, followed by senior Jaycie Bussell in 141st in 26:07.11, Jaelyn Gibson in 157th in 26:35.70, Izzy Hughes in 192nd in 28:36.41 and Chloe Pelfry in 201st in 29:31.99.
Morgan County also qualified as a team. Abby Allen placed 120th in 25:13.24, with senior Jaime-Lynn Daniel in 140th in 26:03.45, Anna Cantrell in 144th in 26:09.40 and Janesey Lewis in 206th in 30:14.77.
Menifee County's Taylor Parks earned a state bid as an individual. She finished 115th in 25:01.15.
Bishop Brossart benefited from having the top three individual finishers. The Lady ‘Stangs claimed the team title with 36 points. Kentucky Country Day was second with 96 points, followed by Villa Madonna in third with 118 points.
Brossart's Claire Curtsinger won the race in 19:42.90, with teammates Amy Klocke (20:05.82) and Sadie Hartig (20:16.82) right behind her.