Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Elizabeth Funderburk goes 17:50 in Thomasville at the Yellow Jacket Invitational

Yellow JacketBy mid-October, high school cross-country teams in Florida and Georgia are looking toward their respective state championship series. But in South Georgia the regular season isn't over until after Thomas County Central hosts the Yellow Jacket Invitational. So on Saturday morning, 15 October 2016, harriers from Southwest Georgia and the Big Bend of Florida gathered at Thomas County Middle School for the 24th annual Yellow Jacket Invitational.


The meet opened with a spectacular run by Elizabeth Funderburk in the high school girls' 5K. Funderburk had won the race in 2015, but in 2016 the Colquitt County junior crushed the field, finishing 600 meters ahead of the next runner in 17:50. Alli Hay of Pataula Charter was second in 20:16. Pelham's Monica Webb edged Mackenzie Walls of Veterans for third, 21:08 to 21:13.


Veterans had a second runner in the top ten, Byrnn Wilson, who was ninth in 22:17. Lee County only had one top ten finisher, Ansley Cain, eighth overall in 22:09. But Lee County also had scoring performances from Caroline Taylor (16th, 23:04), Ramsay Miller (17th, 13:25), Rachel Kiesau (20th, 23:47), and Ashley Bennett (34th, 25:18). Lee County had 83 points and the team title; Veterans scored 89 for a close second. Host team Thomas County Central was third with 113 points, led by the seventh-place 21:58 finish of Cara Eaton.


2016 Yellow Jacket XC Invitational Team Standings, High School Girls
  1. Lee County, 83
  2. Veterans, 89
  3. Thomas County Central, 113
  4. Worth County, 127
  5. Colquitt County, 135
  6. Bainbridge, 165
  7. Berrien County, 175
  8. Lincoln, 207
  9. Bradwell Institute, 209
  10. Baconton Charter, 252
  11. Pelham, 265
  12. Albany, 280
  13. Thomasville, 282
  14. Furlow Charter, 373
  15. Cairo, 410

Top 15 High School Girls, 24th annual Yellow Jacket XC Invitational
  1. 17:49.80 ~ Elizabeth Funderburk (Colquitt County) 11
  2. 20:15.36 ~ Alli Hay (Pataula Charter) 12
  3. 21:07.34 ~ Monica Webb (Pelham) 12
  4. 21:12.11 ~ Mackenzie Walls (Veterans) 9
  5. 21:42.55 ~ Nicole Presley (Baconton Charter) 12
  6. 21:55.09 ~ Riley O'Linn (Valwood) 11
  7. 21:57.15 ~ Cara Eaton (Thomas County Central) 11
  8. 22:08.48 ~ Ansley Cain (Lee County) 12
  9. 22:16.05 ~ Byrnn Wilson (Veterans) 11
  10. 22:17.93 ~ Rebecca Chandler (Berrien County) 9
  11. 22:27.39 ~ Kailey Brough (Bradwell Institute) 11
  12. 22:39.32 ~ Brianna Zupko (Worth County) 9
  13. 22:43.27 ~ Uriyah Davis (Bainbridge) 11
  14. 22:59.09 ~ Elizabeth Santiago (Bradwell Institute) 12
  15. 23:02.25 ~ Angela Cipriani (Thomas County Central) 12

There were no 600-meter leads in the high school boys' 5K, a much closer race. Lee County junior Colby Jones won the race in 17:13, just ahead of the 17:18 posted by runner-up Jake Merritt of Colquitt County. Brandon Taylor was just a few more steps back, third in 17:22.


As in the girls' race, the competition for the team title was a showdown between Lee County and Veterans. Lee County had three runners in the top ten--Jones, Hunter Hatfield (4th, 17:40), and Benjamin Phillips (9th, 18:31). Veterans only had a pair of top-ten finishers, Tyree Steele (5th, 17:43) and Robbie Griffin (7th, 18:19). But while Lee County was waiting for a fourth scorer, Veterans put Griffin Hodges (13th, 18:41), Tyler Webb (14th, 18:42), and Aamiri Ducksworth (15th, 18:43) across the finish line--as well as pushers Isaac Jennings (16th, 18:46) and Brett Horton (21st, 18:55). Veterans had 54 points, giving the boys from Kathleen, Georgia the team title. Lee County was second with 66 points. Led by frosh Daniel Stewart (8th, 18:26), Albany was third with 109 points.


2016 Yellow Jacket XC Invitational Team Standings, High School Boys
  1. Veterans, 54
  2. Lee County, 66
  3. Albany, 109
  4. Thomas County Central, 143
  5. Lincoln, 150
  6. Bainbridge, 152
  7. Berrien County, 197
  8. Worth County, 201
  9. Colquitt County, 246
  10. Leon, 252
  11. Bradwell Institute, 290
  12. Baconton Charter, 329
  13. Thomasville, 365
  14. Cairo, 383
  15. Pelham, 403
  16. Furlow Charter, 421

Top 15 High School Boys, 24th annual Yellow Jacket XC Invitational
  1. 17:12.50 ~ Colby Jones (Lee County) 11
  2. 17:17.10 ~ Jake Merritt (Colquitt County) 11
  3. 17:21.80 ~ Brandon Taylor (Thomas County Central) 12
  4. 17:39.94 ~ Hunter Hatfield (Lee County) 11
  5. 17:42.85 ~ Tyree Steele (Veterans)
  6. 17:51.98 ~ John Bohnstengel (Leon) 11
  7. 18:18.66 ~ Robbie Griffin (Veterans) 11
  8. 18:25.58 ~ Daniel Stewart (Albany) 9
  9. 18:30.82 ~ Benjamin Phillips (Lee County) 9
  10. 18:33.95 ~ Jackson Roberts (Leon) 9
  11. 18:37.00 ~ Gian Kerlegon (Albany) 11
  12. 18:38.70 ~ Cedric Williams (Albany) 12
  13. 18:40.06 ~ Griffin Hodges (Veterans) 10
  14. 18:41.76 ~ Tyler Webb (Veterans) 12
  15. 18:42.11 ~ Aamiri Ducksworth (Veterans) 10

For the second year in a row, Anna James took first in the middle school girls competition. James, a Thomas County eighth-grader, ran the two-mile course in 15:23. Maya Wynn of Furlow Charter was second in 16:00, and Maddie Harper of Berrien County came in third in 16:11.


Harper was followed across the finish line by the rest of the Berrien County scorers--Gaylon Griner (4th, 16:35), Hannah Dodd (5th, 16:43), Stephanie Kimbrel (6th, 16:45), and Zoey Hodge (7th, 16:59). Those five runners gave Berrien County a mathematically unbeatable score of 25 points and the middle school girls' team title. James' Thomas County team was second with 72 points, just ahead of the 76 scored by third-place Colquitt County.


2016 Yellow Jacket XC Invitational Team Standings, Middle School Girls
  1. Berrien County, 25
  2. Thomas County, 72
  3. Colquitt County, 76
  4. Pataula Charter, 105
  5. Furlow Charter, 131
  6. Baconton Charter, 147

Top 15 Middle School Girls, 24th annual Yellow Jacket XC Invitational
  1. 15:22.47 ~ Anna James (Thomas County) 8
  2. 15:59.18 ~ Maya Wynn (Furlow Charter) 8
  3. 16:10.26 ~ Maddie Harper (Berrien County) 8
  4. 16:34.86 ~ Gaylon Griner (Berrien County) 6
  5. 16:42.95 ~ Hannah Dodd (Berrien County) 8
  6. 16:44.88 ~ Stephanie Kimbrel (Berrien County) 8
  7. 16:58.54 ~ Zoey Hodge (Berrien County) 7
  8. 17:18.88 ~ Maggie Hand (Berrien County) 6
  9. 17:26.55 ~ Emma Giddens (Berrien County) 7
  10. 17:30.81 ~ Abigail Dismukes (Pataula Charter) 4
  11. 17:36.86 ~ Makenna Maroney (Thomas County) 8
  12. 17:48.21 ~ Evelyn Vasquez (Colquitt County) 7
  13. 17:51.29 ~ Brianna Thornton (Pataula Charter) 5
  14. 17:51.80 ~ Aixa Santiago (Bradwell Institute) 6
  15. 18:04.91 ~ Kathrine Brooke Wright (Colquitt County) 7

Lawson Brinkley of MacIntyre Park took first in the middle school boys' two-mile in 14:04, comfortably ahead of the 14:13 posted by runner-up Nicholas Samuel of Fairview. It was the third race in ten days for Samuel, coming after the Leon County Championship on 5 October 2016 and the Tallahassee Open on 13 October 2016. Chandler Gaskins of Berrien County placed third in 14:42.

MacIntyre Park placed two more runners in the top ten--Matthew Lewis (6th, 15:15) and Nolan Barnes (10th, 15:35). Lane Whiddon (12th, 15:45) and Andrew Geyer (17th, 15:54) finished the scoring for MacIntyre Park, giving their team a winning 38 points. Berrien County squeaked ahead of Lee County for second 65 points to 66.


2016 Yellow Jacket XC Invitational Team Standings, Middle School Boys
  1. MacIntyre Park, 38
  2. Berrien County, 65
  3. Lee County, 66
  4. Colquitt County, 115
  5. Thomas County, 164
  6. Furlow Charter, 183
  7. Baconton Charter, 184
  8. Worth County, 189
  9. Whigham, 215

Top 15 Middle School Boys, 24th annual Yellow Jacket XC Invitational
  1. 14:03.75 ~ Lawson Brinkley (MacIntyre Park) 8
  2. 14:12.33 ~ Nicholas Samuel (Unattached, FL) 8
  3. 14:41.87 ~ Chandler Gaskins (Berrien County) 7
  4. 14:45.95 ~ Jonathan Clowers (Pelham) 8
  5. 14:49.86 ~ Case Gregory (Colquitt County) 7
  6. 15:14.19 ~ Matthew Lewis (MacIntyre Park) 7
  7. 15:23.18 ~ Jaquez Jones (Baconton Charter) 8
  8. 15:31.61 ~ Chris Tyson (Berrien County) 8
  9. 15:34.62 ~ Andrew Harnage (Berrien County) 6
  10. 15:34.80 ~ Nolan Barnes (MacIntyre Park) 7
  11. 15:38.20 ~ Trent Mays (Lee County) 9
  12. 15:44.70 ~ Lane Whiddon (MacIntyre Park) 7
  13. 15:46.44 ~ Hunter Janes (Lee County) 6
  14. 15:47.98 ~ Edward Ostrander (Lee County) 7
  15. 15:49.88 ~ Luke Paramore (Worth County) 6


Yellow Jacket Cross Country Invitational winners, 2008 - 2016
High School Boys
DateTeam ChampIndividual Champ
18 October 2008Tift County, 32 points16:59, Hunter Honeycutt (Tift County)
17 October 2009
16 October 2010
15 October 2011
20 October 2012
19 October 2013Maclay, 4116:13, Chase Harris (Bainbridge) 11
25 October 2014Thomas County Central, 7416:25, Wil Luca (Leon) 12
17 October 2015Leon, 3615:47, Poncherella Leonard (Bainbridge) 11
15 October 2016Veterans, 5417:13, Colby Jones (Lee County) 11
High School Girls
DateTeam ChampIndividual Champ
18 October 2008Valdosta, 30 points21:12, JaCourtney Alexander (Cairo)
17 October 2009
16 October 2010
15 October 2011
20 October 2012
19 October 2013Maclay, 3019:44, Paige Braswell (Bainbridge) 12
25 October 2014Berrien County, 4720:58, Rebekah Smith (Thomasville) 11
17 October 2015Leon, 4420:07, Elizabeth Funderburk (Colquitt County) 10
15 October 2016Lee County, 8317:50, Elizabeth Funderburk (Colquitt County) 11
Do you have results from the missing years? Please let me know!


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