Friday, November 21, 2014

State Championship Titles of Tallahassee & Leon County High School Cross-Country Teams, 1947-2014

High school cross country isn't that old as an organized sport in Florida. The first FHSAA state championship in cross country wasn't held until 1947. In 1969, over two decades later, a Tallahassee school first brought home a state cross country title. Since then Leon County boys (and starting in the 1970s, girls) have won numerous team and individual titles at the state cross country meet. The 2014 championships were held right in Tallahassee at Leon County's Apalachee Regional Park, home to the FHSAA state cross country final since 2012. Capital City athletes didn't leave empty handed.

Sukhi Khosla
In the final event of a morning of championship races, Leon senior Sukhi Khosla won the class 3A boys race in 15:01.8, the fastest time of the day on the 5K course at ARPXC. It was Khosla's second state cross country win and the ninth for Leon--putting the school in the FHSAA record book for the most individual championships. Repeating is no small feat--since the state meet was established in 1947, only 29 boys have tallied two wins. An even more elite group of five boys won three times. Three of the double winners have come from Tallahassee--Ray Carter (1988, 1989) of Leon, Patrick Swain (2008, 2009) of Maclay, and now Sukhi Khosla (2013, 2014) of Leon. The Capital City also produced one of the triple winners--Matt Mizereck (2007, 2008, 2009) of Leon.


The same race put a Tallahassee team into the record books, as the Chiles Timberwolves took the class 3A boys' team title--the school's fourth. seniors Avery Bartlett (3rd, 15:31.8), Allan Hernandez (7th, 15:39.1), Tyson Murray (8th, 15:43.4), and Jared Grigas (24th, 16:05.8) combined with with junior Austin Dodson (27th, 16:08.2) to put up a winning score of 64 points for the Timberwolves, with back-up by seniors Thomas Blaine (32nd, 16:15.5) and Austin Runtschke (78th, 16:56.2).

2014 Chiles High boys' cross country team
Tallahassee dominance in the 3A boys race continued as the Leon boys, led by Khosla, placed second in the team standings with 77 points. In addition to Khosla, seniors Scott Hunter (4th, 15:33.6), Kyle Buchholz (21st, 16:01.9), and Wil Luca (22nd, 16:04.0), together with sophomore Matt Cashin (39th, 16:22.9) scored for the Lions. Senior Maxx Marshall (41st, 16:23.1) and junior Adam Wallenfelsz (92nd, 17:11.3) also competed for Leon.


Leon County was also represented in the class 3A girls race, as Chiles scored 147 points to place fifth. Chiles junior Emma Tucker put together the right race at the right time, running 18:44.2 to place third in the state final. Junior Alex Wallace (12th, 19:03.4), frosh Ana Wallace (31st, 19:35.5), junior Juliana Krueger (44th, 19:56.0), frosh Erin Phelps (90th, 20:50.3), sophomore Jianni McDole (116th, 21:31.5), and frosh Cynthia Patterson (154th, 22:59.9) also contributed to the Chiles cause.


Tallahassee Maclay was fourth in the class 1A girls team standings, scoring 158 points. Sophomore Caroline Willis broke into the top ten for the Marauders, placing ninth in 19:20.9. Sophomore Molly McCann (30th, 20:06.9), sixth-grader Lindsay James (41st, 20:25), eight-grader Kenzie Mazziotta (44th, 20:39.0), frosh Jainey Coates (52nd, 20:58.9), frosh Ann Elise Desotell (53rd, 21:00.5), and junior Katie Whitworth filled out the rest of Maclay's squad in the championship race.


Emma TuckerMaclay was also represented in the class 1A boys race, where the Marauders scored 208 points to take fifth. Junior George Gwynn (25th, 17:05.1), sophomore Jake Mazziotta (29th, 17:11.1), frosh James McClure (42nd, 17:36.7), junior Daniel Becker (80th, 18:18.9), frosh Daniel Sweeney (103rd, 18:44.8), junior George Escobar (133rd, 19:23.0), and eighth-grader Clay Milford (145th, 19:37.6) competed for Maclay.


Some of Tallahassee's neighbors also made it to the State Finals. The Blountstown Tigers and the Aucilla Christian Warriors both raced in class 1A boys competition. Blountstown was scored 505 points to place 22nd with senior Thomas Howell (77th, 18:17.4), sophomore Tyreek Sumner (98th, 18:41.2), frosh Jesse Boyd (110th, 18:50.2), sophomore Alfredo Puente (160th, 20:05.9), frosh Weston Schrock (161st, 20:06.8), frosh Will Price (162nd, 20:08.4), and sophomore Mark Wilson (170th, 20:26.4). It was the third year in a row at the State Championships for the Tigers. For Aucilla Christian, it was their second straight trip to the State Meet. This time, the Warriors placed 24th with 555 points earned by the running of sophomore Gatlin Nennstiel (45th, 17:39.0), senior Carson Nennstiel (142nd, 19:35.6), sophomore Nick Arceneaux (149th, 19:44.9), sophomore Traynor Barker (158th, 20:03), seventh-grader Dawson Bishop (159th, 20:04.8), sophomore Chaz Hamilton (169th, 20:25.9), and junior Taylor Nugent (180th, 21:26.8).


Caleb Wiedeman and Alan PearsonThe Aucilla Christian girls made it to State for the fifth year in a row in class 1A, placing 25th and scoring 723 points. Racing for the Warriors were frosh Camryn Grant (124th, 22:54.5), sixth-grader Olivia Walton (152nd, 23:52.2), sixth-grader Anna Leigh Trest (157th, 24:06.5), junior Sarah Tharpe (167th, 24:55.6), seventh-grader Abby Reams (168th, 25:00.4), eighth-grader Grace Beshears (175th, 25:57.9), and eighth-grader Hanna Searcy (177th, 26:14.8).


In class 2A, Wakulla made a return appearance in both the boys race and the girls race. Haleigh Martin (16th, 19:40.5), Constance Lewis (109th, 21:56.0), Juliana Prestia (114th, 22:04.9), Lydia Wiedeman (130th, 22:18.2), Emily Lawrence (166th, 23:52.3), Alyssa McIver (174th, 25:19.9), and Jeanna Prisco (175th, 25:58.0) scored 474 points for the War Eagles in the class 2A girls race, placing 20th. The Wakulla boys placed 22nd in the class 2A race on the strength of 514 points scored by the team of sophomore Bryce Cole (72nd, 17:26.4), senior Lane Williams (104th, 17:53.5), sophomore James Story (142nd, 18:30.9), frosh Dylan Peebles (144th, 18:31.4), senior Travis Parks (155th, 18:38.5), frosh Caleb Wiedeman (157th, 18:39.8), and senior Alan Pearson (163rd, 18:51.0).


Because of the winning performances of the Chiles boys and Leon's Sukhi Khosla, I have to update the list of titles won by local teams. Thank you, guys; thank you too much. And congratulations.




CHILES HIGH SCHOOLTimberwolves

Team Titles

Boys:
FHSAA 3A State Champions, 2003
FHSAA 3A State Champions, 2005
FHSAA 3A State Champions, 2006
FHSAA 3A State Champions, 2014

Girls:
FHSAA 3A State Champions, 2008
FHSAA 3A State Champions, 2009
FHSAA 3A State Champions, 2010


Individual Titles

Boys:
2003, Alex Miletich, 3A State Champion

Girls:
2009, Carly Thomas, 3A State Champion
2012, Rachel Givens, 3A State Champion



GODBY HIGH SCHOOL

Individual Titles

Boys:
2007, Joe Franklin, 2A State Champion





LEON HIGH SCHOOL

Team Titles

Boys:
FHSAA 2A State Champions 1969
FHSAA 3A State Champions 2007
FHSAA 3A State Champions 2008
FHSAA 3A State Champions 2009

Girls:
FHSAA 3A State Champions 1977
FHSAA 3A State Champions 1978
FHSAA 3A State Champions 1986
FHSAA 3A State Champions 1987
FHSAA 3A State Champions 1988


Individual Titles:

Boys:
1976 Herb Wills, 4A State Champion
1986 Doug Dickinson, 3A State Champion
1988 Ray Carter, 3A State Champion
1989 Ray Carter, 3A State Champion
2007 Matt Mizereck, 3A State Champion
2008 Matt Mizereck, 3A State Champion
2009 Matt Mizereck, 3A State Champion
2013 Sukhi Khosla, 3A State Champion
2014 Sukhi Khosla, 3A State Champion

Girls:
1979 Rosemary Desloge, 3A State Champion
1988 Jessica Scafidi, 3A State Champion
1989 Jessica Scafidi, 3A State Champion
1990 Jessica Scafidi, 3A State Champion



LINCOLN HIGH SCHOOL

Individual Titles

Girls:
1991 Kathy Ward, 4A State Champion
1992 Kathy Ward, 4A State Champion




MACLAY SCHOOL

Team Titles

Boys:
FHSAA 2A State Champions, 1998
FHSAA 1A State Champions, 1999
FHSAA 1A State Champions, 2000
FHSAA 1A State Champions, 2001
FHSAA 1A State Champions, 2002


Girls:
FHSAA 2A State Champions, 1997
FHSAA 2A State Champions, 1998
FHSAA 1A State Champions, 1999
FHSAA 1A State Champions, 2001
FHSAA 1A State Champions, 2005


Individual Titles

Boys:
2002, Ryan Deak, 1A State Champion
2008, Patrick Swain, 1A State Champion
2009, Patrick Swain, 1A State Champion



NORTH FLORIDA CHRISTIAN SCHOOL

Individual Titles

Boys:
1989, Robert Boyd, 1A State Champion







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