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Tide boys advance to state meet

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Galax finished fourth in region XC, girls fifth; three qualify as individuals.

By Craig Worrell, Sports Editor

HILLSVILLE –– Galax and Grayson County had a total of five runners post all-region finishes and Galax’s boys advanced to the state meet for the 19th time, placing fourth as a team in the Region C cross country championships Wednesday at the Southwestern Virginia Training Center.

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“This was the fastest overall top 15 times for both boys and girls that we’ve ever had in one race on this course,” Galax coach Tony Quesenberry said “The competition was the toughest ever for Region C at this meet.”

Travis Cockerham earned all-region status for the third year as the Maroon Tide senior placed fourth in a field of 101 runners, posting a finishing time of 16 minutes, 45 seconds. Radford’s Walker Mogen was the boys’ individual champion with a winning time of 16:23, followed by Matthew Farmer of Rural Retreat (16:29) and Josh Goodman of Bland County (16:31).

Issac Jordan of Galax joined Cockerham on the all-region list with his 15th-place finish, running the 3.1-mile course in 17:18. The top 15 individuals advance to the state meet.

Tyler Pauley of Grayson County finished 25th in 17:57, followed by Chandler Quesenberry (34th, 18:20), Justin Ayers (35th, 18:25), Dustin Matthews (37th, 18:28) and Kevin Loftin (39th, 18:34), all of Galax. Trevor Quesenberry posted a time of 19:27 for the Tide.

Adam Wyatt ran a time of 18:47 for Grayson, followed by teammates Zack Blassingame (20:21), Roy Oakley (23:35), Jairo Rivera (25:07), Dustin Peters (25:25) and Nick Brewer (25:42).

Parry McCluer knocked off region power Radford for the boys’ team championship, nipping the Bobcats by three points 72-75. Floyd County finished third with 112 points and Galax qualified for the Group A meet with its fourth-place showing, nine points behind Floyd. 

Carley Smith of Grayson County was the top-finishing Twin County runner in the girls’ race, taking home a sixth-place finish in 20:47. Galax’s Ashley Jordan and Lindsey Ayers were also all-region performers, Jordan with a ninth-place effort in 20:53 and Ayers with her 12th-place finish in 20:56. Ayers’ time was her personal best, and it was the second-fastest time Jordan has ever run.

Galax’s Megan Boyles cracked the top 30 with a time of 22:29. The Maroon Tide’s Jennifer Laws ran a 23:15 and was trailed by teammates Alexandra Moreno (23:36), Keely DeZern (23:41) and Jessica Salinas (25:35).

Following Smith for Grayson County were Hayley Reavis (22:41), Kayleigh Cummings (22:54), Layken Parks (22:57), Olivia Wyatt (22:59), Melody Mallinson (25:07) and Natalie Ruiz (27:32).

Radford topped Floyd County for the girls’ team title with 68 points, 16 ahead of the Buffaloes. Parry McCluer (111) and James River (118) claimed the final two spots in the state meet while Galax placed fifth as a team with 132 points, 11 ahead of sixth-place Grayson County.