Senior staff writer
Southside cross-country teams fared well in sectional action Saturday.
Franklin Central captured the girls and boys team titles at the New Palestine Sectional, and Southport won the girls meet at Franklin.
Led by individual winner Brianna Lawson (19 minutes, 36 seconds), Franklin Central placed five runners among the top 10: Kathryn Matthies, third; Morgan Ashman, eighth; Audrey Comastri, ninth; and Olivia Camp, 10th. Roncalli finished fifth and was paced by Katie Minton, who finished 11th and also qualified for the Rushville Regional.
Franklin Central’s boys team edged runner-up and host New Palestine 55-73 with Roncalli finishing third. Roncalli’s Nicholas Perkins (14:48.02) won the title. The Flashes placed three runners among the top 10: Mitchell Parrish, fifth; Jackson Andry, seventh; and Noah Perry, eighth. Lutheran’s Charlie Moffitt, 13th, also qualified for the Rushville Regional.
At Franklin, Southport’s girls edged runner-up Center Grove 46-54 as the Cardinals’ Lexie Green (20:07.02) dominated the meet, winning by 38 seconds. Perry Meridian was fifth, led by Triniti Spurgeon, 15th, and qualified as a team for the Shelbyville Regional. Greenwood’s Julia Arruda, 10th, also qualified.
Southport’s Bella Green, sixth, and Kayden Casey, eighth, and Center Grove’s Victoria Martin, fourth, and Nina Fugii, ninth, were among the top 10.
An all-Perry Township top three that finished within seven seconds of each other highlighted the boys action at Franklin.
Southport’s Michael Crook (16:44) edged teammate Drew Shellenberger by four seconds with Perry Meridian’s Christopher Switzer third. The Cardinals finished second to champion Franklin. Center Grove was third and Perry Meridian fifth, also qualifying for the Shelbyville Regional.
Center Grove was led by Ethan Stanley, fifth, and Archit Malik, ninth. Greenwood’s Ethan Pine, 12th, also qualified.
The Shelbyville and Rushville regionals begin with girls at 10:30 a.m. and boys at 11:15 a.m. Saturday. The top five teams and 10 runners from non-advancing teams qualify for semistate.