Andrew Salley finished third to lead the Halifax County High School boys’ cross country team to a third-place finish at a Piedmont District meet held at Smith River Sports Complex on Tuesday.
Lydia Wenzel (13th) led the Comets girls cross country team to a third-place finish in its meet, won by Bassett High School, with Tunstall High School finishing second.
Salley had a time of 18:51.75, while Wenzel had a time of 27:24.12 for the Comets.
Tunstall boys, with a first-place time of 17.28.70 by Ashton Weaver, won with a low score of 27, while Bassett had a team score of 43 and Halifax County a team score of 54.
Bassett girls, behind a first-place time of 21:24.23 by Piper Doughton, won their meet with a team score of 20, with Tunstall posting a 41 and Halifax County an 82.
“We saw a mixed bag in our results this week,” noted Comets coach David Riddle. “Many of our runners knocked their times down, which we are looking at as a goal with each event.
“Some of the runners even knocked off a couple of minutes off their time from last week, which is certainly the direction that we want to see.”
On the flip side, a few runners lost time, and while that is common with early season meets as runners try to get their timing and stride right, the team looks to improve on that going forward, according to Riddle.
“Coach (Michelle) Palmore and I discussed with the team leading up to this meet that these are the types of meets that are a great test for seeing where you are at, considering the success of Bassett and Tunstall in the district the past few years,” continued Riddle.
“You want to test yourself against the best and see where you stand, and we will see the district teams three more times before we head into regionals, so we will look at each time to continue to push our times lower and improve our team results as well.
“We need to narrow our splits between runners to see success as a team.”
Other boys times and finishes include Ethan Kirkhart 21:05.49 (6th); James Francis 21:40.77 (12th); Trevor Riddle 25:04.28 (17th); Luke Redd 25:15.24 (20th); Nathan Comer 26:24,43 (22nd).
Other girls times and finishes include Ashley Irby 29:29.09 (17th); Jenna Hall 29:57.91 (18th); Morgan Crenshaw 30:01.58 (19th); Mallory Salley 30:49.10 (20th); Susanna Watts 34:47.78 (22nd); Mia Lewis 38:07.00 (23rd).