Brazoswood’s cross country teams gained some insight into the competition ahead with the girls winning the Region III 5A-6A Orange Division Region Preview and the boys finishing second.
Leo Perez won Saturday’s varsity meet in 16 minutes, 35.3 seconds and two other Bucs finished in the top 10 — Sam Whitmarsh in fourth in 16:51.5 and Riley Kuhlman in seventh in 17:29.5. Rounding out Brazoswood’s point-scorers were Edmund Franklin, who finished 31st in 18:16.3, and Emiliano Torres-Torres, who was 48th in 18:39.6 to round out the top five for the Bucs varsity runners.
There were 165 runners in the race at Sam Houston State University, where the Region III regional will take place each year. Perez’s time Saturday was almost identical to his performance in the region meet last October, when he finished 20 and qualified for state.
Madison Habeck finished second in 19:54.4 to lead the Lady Bucs. Anna Tyree finished 14th in 22:08, Hannah Vaughn finished 23rd in 22:25.7, Lilly Cole finished 24th in 22:27.8 and Sophia Sutherland finished 33rd in 22:50.3 to finish out the team’s top five. There were 113 runners that participated in the race.
Habeck improved on her time from last year’s region meet, when she finished in 19:59.8 and missed qualifying for state.
“Madison ran her fastest time on this course, even from last year,” Brazoswood cross country coach Michael Tummins said.
The experience will help the Bucs when they compete in the regional Oct. 28 by having run the course in hotter, more humid conditions, Tummins said.
The goal is to have five boys breaking 17 minutes and five girls breaking 21 minutes as well as qualifying for state, he said.
The Bucs next will compete at 7:30 a.m. Saturday at Kingwood High School.
The Wildcats and Ladycats each finished third Saturday in the Ball Beach Invitational in Galveston.
Because of sweltering conditions, organizers shortened the race from a 5K to a 4K, head boys Angleton track coach Chris Steger said. The runners also couldn’t wear spikes on the sand, but the Angleton runners adapted to put in solid performances, he said.
“I thought we ran a good race, better than last week’s in Huntsville and probably the best meet we had all season,” Steger said.
Scoring points for the Wildcats were Noah Windward, who finished 13th in 14:57.3, Isaac Dominguez in 23rd in 15:35, Derek Ortega in 32nd in 15:54.5, Jesus Gutierrez in 34th in 15:57 and Escher Babcock in 16:00.2. There were 184 runners in Angleton’s race.
Ladycats who finished in the top five for their team were Shelbi Barnhill in 17th in 19:05.6, Magdalena Torres in 25th in 19:41.7, Abigail Cruz in 29th in 19:45.6, Adriana Chavez in 30th in 19:46.1 and Selena Chaney in 31st in 19:48.9. There were 150 runners in the Ladycats’ race.
Angleton’s next meet will be at 8 a.m. Saturday at Stahlman Park in Surfside Beach.