Running with the team-minimum five competitors, as they have for much of the season, Powell crossed the finish line with just a 46-second spread between its first and last runners. Freshman Sierra Morrow was the first to cross the finish line, …
Three Panther runners named all-conference at regionalsThree Panther runners achieved all-conference status while the team as a whole placed second to Jackson at the 3A West conference cross country meet in Lyman last Friday. Powell travels to Douglas this Saturday to line up in pursuit of a possible 3A state title. “We're in good shape for the state meet,” said Panther cross country coach Cliff Boos. “They have a good chance to do well for themselves in Douglas.”
Running with the team-minimum five competitors, as they have for much of the season, Powell crossed the finish line with just a 46-second spread between its first and last runners. Freshman Sierra Morrow was the first to cross the finish line, placing seventh in a time of 22:33, slightly more than a minute off the winning pace for the five-kilometer race.
Sophomore Tally Wells was next across in ninth place in a time of 22:45. Two-time all-state performer Desiree Murray was 10th in 22:50, narrowly edging teammate Brooke Nisley out of all-conference designation. Nisley was the 11th runner to the finish line on Friday, making it there in 23:06. Senior Kassey MacDonald rounded out the Panthers' lineup with a 13th-place time of 23:19.
After the race, it was MacDonald's performance that Boos was talking about.
“There's about a 200-meter straightaway before the finish line, and Kassey got out there and was able to turn it on and pass three girls in that stretch,” Boos said. “It was really exciting to see that sort of determination and effort, especially after she's fought through some injuries this year. She looks to be in good condition for the state meet.”
As a team, the Panther girls placed second behind Jackson. The defending 3A state champs tallied a score of 42 points, just eight points better than the Panthers. Cody was a close third with 58 points.
“On a state level, I think the West was the stronger side again this year,” Boos said, providing an early assessment of the Panthers' state outlook. “The fact that we've been able to do well throughout the year should allow us to do well when we get to Douglas this weekend.”
Friday's conference meet did not go as well for the Panther boys. After a fall filled with championship and runner-up finishes at meets, Powell's boys stumbled in Lyman to a fifth-place finish.
“It just wasn't one of our better days,” said Boos, who watched as none of Powell's seven varsity runners was able to secure all-conference recognition.
Bodie Friday narrowly missed that designation. Friday finished on the bubble, crossing in 11th place in a time of 18:55, 35 seconds ahead of the Panthers' next-fastest runner.
Senior John Kissner (19:30) narrowly edged sophomore Andrew Feller (19:32) to the line. Danny McKearney was next to the line in a time of 20:05 while Justin Lynn (20:59) and Cody Fagley (21:00) crossed in close proximity to one another. Tyler McCauley rounded out the Panthers' varsity lineup on Friday with a time of 21:30.
Due to a glitch in the scoring program, Boos was unable to provide the exact placings of the Panthers' finishers on Monday.
In the team standings, Jackson ran away with the 3A West conference title. Jackson produced the three fastest runners at the meet and had five of the first eight runners across the line to finish with a miniscule total of 21 team points. Lander was the next-best team. The Tigers had a score of 66 points.
Powell finished with 104 team points to also trail Cody (94) and Worland (101).
“It just seemed like we didn't run as well as we could,” said Boos. “A lot of those schools are teams that we'd faced and beat throughout much of the season. It was just one of those days where we, for whatever reason, didn't run as well as we have at other meets and some of the kids from those other schools probably did a little better than they have in earlier in the year.”
Despite the conference meet stumble, Boos noted the Panthers could still contend at Douglas.
“I still think think we should be in the thick of the chase for a place at state,” said Boos. “It's a long way down to Lyman by bus and Douglas will be a little more of a challenge as a course. There's a long hill that you have to run up a couple of times, so it will give us a bit more variety. Hopefully we can get back to where we should be.”
The Panther girls line up for an 11:10 a.m. starting time in Douglas this Saturday. The boys' state title race will leave the starting chute at 1 p.m.