Southsider Voice correspondent
Two Southside runners won sectional cross-country championships, and Center Grove’s boys and girls teams captured titles Saturday at Franklin.
Greenwood sophomore Allie Dalton dominated the girls 5K sectional at Franklin with a time of 18 minutes, 32.82 seconds, 47 seconds ahead of Mooresville’s Maddie Vauters.
Center Grove senior Griffin Miller (15:54.48) won the boys 5K sectional at Franklin by 9.9 seconds over Perry Meridian junior John Tansy. The Trojans defeated Franklin 39-81 for the title.
Center Grove so
homore Valerie Clark (19:47.85, third place) led the lady Trojans to the Franklin Sectional championship.
Greenwood sophomore Krista Robinson was fourth and posted a time of 20:02.27.
The top five finishers at Franklin were underclassmen, an indicator of the strong future of long-distance runners from the Suthside. Combined, a total of 24 freshmen and sophomores from area schools qualified for regional competition.
Center Grove’s top runners were senior Marissa Ericson, ninth, 20:30.62; freshman Victoria Martin, 10th, 20:32.58; sophomore Maddie Keeley, 12th, 20:41.04; and sophomore Olivia Rassel, 13th, 20:53.09.
Led by sophomore Heather Blankenbaker (21:06.61), Southport was fourth at Franklin and qualified for the South Dearborn Sectional Saturday. Her teammates are sophomore Christy Dean, 23rd, 21:47.97; junior Delaney Bucker, 27th, 22:07.03; junior Shelby Rogers, 29th, 22:11.29; and junior Katie Cox, 31st, 22:31.32.
Franklin Central’s and Roncalli’s girls team finished second and third, respectively, at the New Palestine Sectional to qualify for Saturday’s Rushville Regional.
FC junior Brooke Talhelm (19:50.07) finished second and 14.78 seconds behind Warren Central’s Constance Jones. Talhelm’s teammates finished third, fourth, 15 and 16th.
Also running for the Flashes are junior Emily Welch, 20:09.78; senior Cailyn Adams, 20:12.72: sophomore Sarah Kurtz, 21:53.04; and senior Sarah Cougill, 21:58.00.
Roncalli’s top runners were freshman Kate Morse, ninth, 21:17.51; junior Emily Barron, 13th, 21:40.14; freshman Olivia Origer, 20th, 22:26.26; junior Mary Dearing, 24th, 22:41.56; and sophomore Claire Whalen, 26th, 22:50.20.
The top five teams from each sectional plus the top 10 runners representing non-qualified teams reached the regionals.
At Franklin, Griffin led the Trojans to the team title. His teammates are senior Grant Stapleton, fourth, 16:44.27; senior Josh Lawson, sixth, 17:06.98; junior Riley Turk, 10th, 17:29.55; and senior Tyler Antal, 20th, 17:57.96.
In addition to Center Grove advancing to the South Dearborn Regional, there is also Greenwood, which placed third at the Franklin Sectional, Perry Meridian fourth and Southport fifth.
Greenwood – junior Hunter Smith, fifth, 16:55.89; senior Mykael Ritchotte, 16th, 17:51.17; freshman Conner Terhune, 22nd, 18:00.30; freshman Bailey McMahon, 23rd, 18:00.82; and junior Garrett Henderson, 27th, 18:04.68.
Perry Meridian – Tansy, second, 16:25.89; freshman Chris Switzer, 11th, 17:30.81; junior Jacob Sampson, 29th, 18:07.74; junior Dylan Brown, 32nd, 18:09.19; and senior Tyler Grimes, 35th, 18:18.16.
Southport – junior Chris Sherman, 15th, 17:46.43; sophomore Justin Ray, 26th, 18:03.54; freshman Michael Crook, 28th, 18:05.78; freshman Luke Manning, 34th, 18:15.49; and freshman Mark Carlson, 39th, 18:38.04.
Two runners – juniors Hunter Slater, 13th, 17:39.00, and Jared Davenport, 24th, 18:02.67 – from Greenwood Christian Academy qualified at Franklin for the South Dearborn Regional.
At New Palestine, Beech Grove missed the fifth team spot by only nine points but will send four runners to the Rushville Regional: junior Vilas Vuskalns, eighth, 17:27.99; senior Jason Smith, ninth, 17:29.32; sophomore Brian Davids, 32nd, 18:26.33; and sophomore Mason Darling, 34th, 18:32.58.
Joining Dalton and Robinson in regional action are Greenwood freshman Olivia Weston, 17th, 21:21.46; Perry Meridian sophomore Olivia LeMasters, 22nd, 21:45.21; freshman Kayla O’Brien, 24th, 21:58.43; and senior Shannon Murphy, 28th, 22:09.53.
Beech Grove juniors Kyli Luna (21st, 22:28.88) and Brie Spurgeon, 32nd, 23:21.16) and senior Gabrielle Anderson (37th, 23:59.93) qualified at New Palestine.