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Cross country runners post best times, improve state rankings

The HCHS cross country teams competed in the Owensboro Invitational 5K race at Yellow Creek Park Saturday.

“It was a very good day for Hancock County,” HCHS coach Wes Meserve said. “We had many athletes earn medals, move up in the regional and state rankings, and the majority of our runners ran either season or career best times.”

Freshman Hunter Stephens placed 28th with a time of 18:32.

“Hunter ran a very fast first mile and I think that hurt him later in the race,” the coach said. “I still believe he is much faster than what we are seeing.”

Emmitt Meserve (7th grader) was 43rd in the varsity boys race with a time of 19:23. Emmitt tied the fastest time for a 7th grader for Hancock County since at least the year 2000. He’s the third fastest 7th grader in the state regardless of class.

“Emmitt ran the most consistent race of all our boys. Our 2-6 boys packed well through the first mile, but they started falling off after that point. Even though they fell off the pace I think that carried them through to their PRs.”

Noah Henson was 60th in 20:45, Damion Basham 64th in 20:58, Griffin DeJarnette 65th in 20:59 and Max DeJarnette 88th in 22:43.

Five of six varsity boys ran season or career best times. The boys are ranked third in the region and 10th in the state.

Drew Burden of Madisonville won in 16:29.

Izzy Ross led the HCHS varsity girls team, placing 32nd in a time of 22:39. Lexus Ralph was 40th in 23:23, Preslee Meserve 50th in 25:35 and Juliana Nevitt 70th in 28:11. Izzy, Preslee and Juliana all ran PRs.

The varsity girls are now ranked third in the region and ninth in the state.

“Izzy ran a very strong race. She looked more confident than in previous races this season. Lexus was pretty congested and still ran a pretty good time, but she would have done a lot better if she’d been healthy,” the coach said.

Ellen Meserve placed second in the elementary girls 3K race. Her time was 13:11, just eight seconds behind the winner, Bristol Dukes of Daviess County. Ellen ran a PR and is ranked third in the state for all elementary age girls.

“Ellen led about a mile of her race, but gave up when the girl from Daviess County caught her. She can definitely run faster if she decides to race for the full distance and not give up on herself in the later stages,” coach Meserve said.

Oonagh DeJarnette was 13th in 15:07.

Carolina Jones earned a medal while placing 14th in the 3K girls middle school race. Her time was 13:34. Jayda Meserve was 30th in 14:50 and Lyla DeJarnette was 50th in 16:05.

Elias Meserve was eighth in the 3K elementary boys race with a time of 13:33. Beckham DeJarnette was 17th in 14:32 and Michael Fulkerson 32nd in 16:12.

Elias ran a PR and is ranked #1 in the state for 3rd grade and younger.

Henry Proctor placed 22nd in the 3K boys middle school race in 12:07. Talon Singleton was 68th in 14:43.

By Steve Wimmer

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