Cross country

Halifax County High School head cross country coach David Riddle (right) reviews instructions with runners during Monday’s opening practice at Edmunds Park.

The first day of official practice for the Halifax County High School cross country team at Edmunds Park was a little bit of a mixed bag.

“We had a good day and were pleased with what we saw for the start,” said Comets head coach David Riddle.

On the other hand, not as many runners were in the fold on opening day as had been hoped for. 

“We had 14 runners come out for our first day,” Riddle noted.

“We are looking for that number to grow significantly as the week continues and people get back into town from vacation, ball tournaments and finish up summer work.”

Building numbers is important for Riddle and the Comets harriers as they look toward Piedmont District competition and competing against Region 4D schools for the first time in post-season competition.

“We lost some key seniors from last year on both the girls and boys sides,” Riddle pointed out, “but we have a lot of talent coming back that either was in the top seven last season or close to it.”

Riddle said he feels good about the new runners that were on hand for the first day of practice.

“We have a very solid group of newcomers, several that already have a background in running, and several coming over from other sports backgrounds and giving this a shot for the first time,” noted Riddle.

“We feel like that mix can help play into a very successful season for the team.”

Joe Chandler is the sports editor for The Gazette-Virginian. Contact him at

Joe Chandler is the sports editor for The Gazette-Virginian. Contact him at