- 5,000 Meter Run - Gabriella Karas (Martha Layne Collins) 18:14.80 SB; Emma Valle (Lafayette) 19:20.13; Michaela Reinhart (Lexington Catholic) 19:28.69;
- 5,000 Meter Run - Ben Young (Tates Creek) 16:09.54; Brennan Fields (Madison Central) 16:31.90 SB; Jay Solinger (Martha Layne Collins) 16:45.76; Malik Mahmud (Paul Dunbar) 16:57.07; Shelley Deharte (Rowan County) 17:01.04; Alex Mortimer (Tates Creek) 17:08.47; Mason Crump (Madison Central) 17:09.80 SB; Kadesh Murphy (Lafayette) 17:10.29; Griffin Sexton (Madison Central) 17:11.76 SB; Zach Murphy (Lafayette) 17:25.68; Scott Kaiser (Lafayette) 17:42.86;
For the second time in a month I found myself at Masterson Station for another meet hosted by Tates Creek. Although it was later in the year this time around, the weather was a bit warmer and the conditions not as optimal as it was for the Bluegrass Invitational. Coming into today, there were key match-ups on both the guys and girls side of racing. Here’s how they played out:
High School Girls Recap
The big headline coming into the girl’s race was the four-way battle up front between Anne Heffernan of St. Ursula Academy in Cincinnati, Gabby Karas (AA #1) of Collins, Emma Valle of Lafayette (AAA #4), and Michaela Reinhart (AA #2) of Lexington Catholic. Unfortunately, St. Ursula did not bring their top runners and Heffernan did not compete in today’s meet. Of course, this does not mean that this race did not disappoint with some fast times up front. Immediately out of the gate, Karas, Valle, and Reinhart found each other up front and created a sizeable lead on the rest of the pack. It took about ¾ of a mile for Karas to open up any sort of noticeable lead, but after that she did not look back. Coming through the mile in 5:36, the 2-mile in 11:36, and the 5K in a record-shattering time of 18:14 (previous record was 19:13) there was no question as to who the fastest girl on the course was. The two runners behind her, however, were no slouches. Valle holding a consistent lead over Reinhart the whole way ran a 19:20 for a solid second and payback over Reinhart for beating her at Bluegrass Invitational. Reinhart’s time of 19:28 was good for third place. Rounding out the top 5 were Jodi Llanora (21:12) of Lexington Catholic and Julia Manning (21:35) of Madison Central. On the team side of the race, Madison Central used their pack to secure a victory over the field with a score of 49. AA #5 Lexington Catholic’s strong top-2 helped them earn runners-up with 59 points and Collins placed 3rd with 84 points edging out Tates Creek, competing without a few of their top runners, with 87 points.
High School Boys Recap
The boys race featured a potential rematch / regional rivalry showdown between Ben Young (AAA #7) of Tates Creek and John Spencer (AAA #4) of Lafayette. Spencer did not race today, however, and so Ben Young went into the race as the favorite looking to get his second victory of the season. Right from the start Young found only one competitor willing to challenge him for the lead and it came from Jay Solinger (AA #5) of Collins. Solinger hung with Young much the same as Valle and Reinhart hung with Karas, slightly behind at the mile but still a presence. Young came through the mile at 5:00 with Solinger at 5:01. The second mile, however, was where Young made his move and broke open a lead on Solinger and the rest of the field. Young came through the 2-mile in 10:18 while Brennan Fields of Madison Central had been pacing his way into second, overtaking Solinger. Young looked smooth and in control for the rest of the race as he took home the victory in a time of 16:09. This also broke a previous course record set by Patrick Gregory at last years meet in a time of 16:12. Fields’ pacing strategy paid off in the end as he ran 16:31, good enough for runner-up. Solinger (16:45), Malik Mahmud (16:57) of Paul Dunbar, and Shelley Deharte (17:01) of Rowan Co rounded out the top 5. The team race was very close and some interesting observations need to be made. Taking home the top hardware was Madison Central with 62 points, barely edging out AAA #9 Tates Creek with 64 points, and AAA #7 Lafayette with 72. The interesting twist comes when one looks at the athletes who ran (or didn’t run) for each school. As mentioned before, Lafayette was without top runner John Spencer. However, Tates Creek was also missing their usual third runner Ben Hart. Also adding to the muddled results is the fact that Madison Central was also missing a usual scorer in Seth Richardson. At the end of the day, what this really concludes is that these three teams are all very close together. We will just have to continue to watch them duke it out over the remainder of the season.