LEXINGTON – The South Warren girls’ cross country team posted its best finish in program history Saturday.

Freshman Taylor Brown placed 10th individually to lead the Spartans to a fifth-place finish with 187 points in the KHSAA Class 3A State Cross Country Championship at the Kentucky Horse Park.

“I don’t think we have anybody over a sophomore and we have several middle school girls, so it looks pretty good for the future,” South Warren coach Steve Eaton said. “Today is our highest finish ever. We’ve never finished higher on the girls’ side than seventh, so fifth – we’re pretty happy with it.”

The Spartans narrowly missed out on a podium finish, which goes to the top four teams. Daviess County edged South Warren for fourth by two points. Oldham County was the best in the 37-team field with 58 points, followed by Dupont Manual in second with 151 and Sacred Heart in third with 153.

Brown finished the 287-person 5,000-meter race in 19 minutes, 37.13 seconds to place ahead of Oldham County’s Ella Henage, Grace Wayland and Savannah Cagle, who all finished less than a second after her.

“I just knew I was close to getting podium, so I just went for it,” Brown said.

Brown led South Warren to the Class 3A, Region 2 title the previous weekend with a fourth-place finish at Ephram White Park in Bowling Green. The Spartans claimed the region title with 35 points, besting second-place Greenwood by 33 points.

“She’s had a great season. She’s one of the only girls we’ve had this year that’s hit 19 (minutes) and she’s just got her stride about the last four races,” Eaton said. “She came in here and I kind of told her she was ranked higher than she was and she ran like I said instead of what she was, so she did great.”

Adding scoring finishes for the Spartans were Megan Kitchens (36th, 20:26.73), Ryleigh Johnson (47th, 20:34.95), Anslee Crosby (48th, 20:36.90) and Brooklynn Wilkins (66th, 20:58.28). Wilkins, a sophomore, is the oldest of the scoring finishers on the team.

Greenwood finished 13th with 406 points and Bowling Green was 21st with 562.

Kaydee Wooldridge was the top finisher for the Lady Gators. She placed 19th with a time of 19 minutes, 49.26 seconds. Adding scoring finishes for Greenwood were Alexi Lancette (30th, 20:15.16), Finley Johnson (122nd, 21:59.70), Kennedy Davis (129th, 22:04.63) and Samirah Salifu (147th, 22:25.28).

Lexie Paszkiewicz led Bowling Green by finishing 20th with a time of 19 minutes, 51.60 seconds. Behind her were Bella Von Steinfort (68th, 21:00.07), Natalie Carson (116th, 21:50.68), Sophie Stockton (205th, 23:15.19) and Abby Adams-Smith (224th, 23:40.43).

Barren County’s Chesney McPherson competed individually and placed 51st with a time of 20 minutes, 42 seconds.

Greenwood’s Cole Jackson landed on the podium in the Class 3A boys’ race. The junior finished in 16 minutes, 28.19 seconds to place 14th out of 299 entrants. The Gators were 19th in the 38-team field with 511 points. Adding scoring finishes for Greenwood were Eli Alvey (31st, 16:59.69), Eli Combs (127th, 17:59.63), Cates Duncan (198th, 18:33.29) and Thorin Byrd (200th, 18:34.47).

Bowling Green finished two spots behind the Gators in the team standings with 577 points. Thomas Tinius (87th, 17:35.45), Gabe Wiles (96th, 17:37.63), Cole Renfrow (107th, 17:45.97), Mike Kanan (172nd, 18:19.91) and Tate Sine (174th, 18:20.67) recorded scoring finishes for the Purples.

South Warren’s Kellen Patterson and Hunter Clemons ran individually, placing 79th and 85th, respectively. Patterson finished in 17 minutes, 30.33 seconds and Clemons finished in 17 minutes, 34.95 seconds.

Trinity was the top boys’ team in Class 3A with 111 points, followed by St. Xavier with 113, Conner with 183 and Madison Central with 193. Madison Central’s Conner O’Shea took the individual title with a time of 15 minutes, 50.60 seconds.

Class 2A

Warren East’s Garrett Elrod and Will Lovell capped off their senior seasons with podium finishes in the 251-person Class 2A boys’ race. Elrod was 13th with a time of 17 minutes, 5.45 seconds and Lovell was 15th in 17 minutes, 10.66 seconds.

“It feels good, especially because me and Will have been running together all year,” Elrod said. “That was what our goal was at the beginning of the year and it was our goal coming into this race, so we got it done.”

The Raiders placed ninth with 318 points. Trey Colson (49th, 17:57.82), Mason Richardson (100th, 18:42.43) and Trevor Hudnall (176th, 20:03.85) recorded scoring finishes for Warren East.

Allen County-Scottsville’s James Stanger just missed a podium finish. The eighth grader placed 16th with a time of 17 minutes, 14.28 seconds. Tad Taylor also competed individually for the Patriots. He finished 62nd in 18 minutes, 10.75 seconds.

Warren Central’s Bosco Tuyisenge placed 66th with a time of 18 minutes, 13.12 seconds and Glasgow’s Logan Lindsey was 69th in 18 minutes, 15.13 seconds.

Corbin was the Class 2A boys’ champion with 134 points. Boyd County was second with 143, Webster County was third with 150 and Highlands rounded out podium finishes with 175 points. Taylor County’s Ryan Maynard was the individual champion. He finished in 16 minutes, 14.25 seconds.

Warren East finished 27th in the 30-team Class 2A girls’ competition. The Lady Raiders had 688 points, led by Emma Steff’s 18th-place finish with a time of 20 minutes, 23.04 seconds. Cady Schoeck (145th, 23:56.38), Reyna Morales (205th, 26:46.72), Cheyenne Stark (215th, 28:31.96) and Emma McGuffey (222nd, 30:27.59) added scoring finishes.

Butler County’s Autumn Jenkins placed 59th with a time of 21 minutes, 47.76 seconds.

Franklin-Simpson’s Jaydee DeGraffenreid finished 73rd in 22 minutes, 12.23 seconds and Cheyenna Neal placed 89th in 22 minutes, 32.65 seconds individually for the Lady Wildcats.

Glasgow’s Mia Cassady placed 133rd in 23 minutes, 35.50 seconds.

Scott was the Class 2A girls’ champion with 74 points, followed by Christian Academy-Louisville with 97, Highlands with 125 and Mason County with 148. Christian Academy-Louisville’s Addi Dewey’s time of 19 minutes, 13.08 seconds was the best in the race.

Class 1A

Edmonson County’s Caroline Parsley finished 138th in the Class 1A girls’ race. Lexington Christian Academy’s Anna Rupp was the individual champion with a time of 18 minutes, 58.46 seconds. Louisville Collegiate won the team title with 96 points.

Edmonson County finished 29th in the Class 1A boys’ team standings with 713 points. The Wildcats were led by Logan Brooks, who finished 80th in a time of 18 minutes, 56.88 seconds. Lane Lindsey (133rd, 19:39.97), Blake Garrett (158th, 19:55.66), Zach Holt (212th, 20:38.45) and Jonah Miller (238th, 21:22.68) added scoring finishes for Edmonson County.

Louisville Holy Cross won the Class 1A team title with 55 points. D.K. Schnieders led the team, finishing first with a time of 16 minutes, 4.22 seconds.{&end}

– Follow sports reporter Jared MacDonald on Twitter @JMacDonaldSport or visit bgdailynews.com.

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