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It was a successful 3A state meet for the members of the Pagosa Springs High School cross country teams, with the girls placing seventh overall, including a fifth-place finish by senior Emily Bryant, and the boys finishing 20th.
And, with several members of both teams returning, the future is promising.
At the meet, held at the Norris Penrose Event Center in Colorado Springs on Saturday, the boys finished 20th overall in team competition, behind conference foe Bayfield, which took 19th place as a team.
Leading the Pirates to their 20th-place finish was senior Tyler Greenly, who finished 52nd with a time of 18 minutes, 47 seconds.
“Tyler had a good day,” coach Scott Anderson said. “it’s really good to see a good performance for a senior on their last high school cross country race.”
Nick Hutcherson was the next Pirate across the line, finishing 71st with a time of 19:10.
Senior Mason Chronowski finished 100th with a time of 19:44.
Liam O’Brien finished 115th in 20:09, with Chris Archuleta two seconds and one place back, finishing 116th.
Rounding out the Pirates competing at the meet was Ben Miller, who finished 129th with a time of 22:22.
Anderson said the team focused on and worked to overcome adversity and persevere throughout the entire season — something he felt they did well at the state meet.
“What’s encouraging is pretty much everyone (among the scorers at the meet) will be back next year,” Anderson said, noting the loss of seniors Greenly, Chronowski, Zach Ellis and Zakk Brown.
Anderson said that, in addition to the returners from this year’s squad, the team is expected to see several new, young runners next year, calling it, “a lot to look forward to.”
The girls’ team made their presence known at the state meet with a fifth-place finish by Bryant and seventh-place finish by the team.
“We were happy with that,” Anderson said, “particularly as young as we are.”
Bryant finished fifth after running a time of 20:31 to earn her first trip to the podium in four years of competing at the state meet.
Bryant was the second conference runner across the finish line, behind Bayfield’s Eva Lou Edwards, who finished first at the meet with a time of 18:41.
“She went out and ran a great race,” Anderson said of Bryant, adding the senior now stands as the fastest female runner in the history of PSHS girls’ cross country.
Olivia Reinhardt was the second Lady Pirate across the line, finishing 20th with a time of 21:21.
“Her future is really bright,” Anderson said. The finish improves over Reinhardt’s 27th-place finish at the meet last year
“We are very happy with Olivia,” Anderson said. “She and Taylor actually had huge days.”
Taylor Hammer-Lee finished 45th on the day with a time of 22:14.
Maddie Greenly was the next Lady Pirate to cross the line, finishing 78th with a time of 24:06.
“Maddie had a great season. She’s just starting to scratch her potential and will be back to build off of this year,” Anderson said, calling Greenly a potential front-runner next year.
Senior Dana Danielson finished 88th in her final career race with a time of 24:06, following a season in which Danielson battled chronic injuries.
“It was really neat to see her finish a race with a smile on her face,” Anderson said. “We were happy with what she was able to give us throughout the season.”
Rounding out the Pirate finishers was Delaney Khung in 100th with a time of 24:37.
Khung, a first-time school athlete, ran well at her initial state meet, Anderson said, highlighting her progress throughout the year.
“She’s going to be solid,” Anderson said.
And while the season only ended Saturday, Bryant has already claimed her first post-season honor, being named to the All-State team following the meet.
Additional post-season honors for the teams are expected soon.