Many of Lake County High School’s cross-country runners visited the Royal Gorge for the first time last Thursday when they competed in the Canyon City Middle School and High School Invitational. Twenty-three high schools participated in the event, coming from as far east as Kansas and as far west as Durango. The five-kilometer course included some tough climbing in the first 1.5 miles, then some steep downhills and a finish across the intimidating bridge. The Panthers conquered their fear and met their goal of making each mile faster than the one before.

Jace Peters led the boys team. He took eighth place with a time of 17 minutes, 22 seconds. Jaren Peters finished in 20:57 and 70th place, and Matthew Wilson took 113th in 22:52.  With only three athletes, the boys did not score as a team.

Keira King finished first for the Lady Panthers. She was 11th in 21:32. Ella Bullock had a strong race, crossing the finish line in 16th and 22:24. Violet Hill ran 23:05 for 26th place. Clara Kirr’s 42nd place and Grace Bunch’s 58th place contributed to the team score. Their race times were 24:17 and 25:32. Amara Olsen, Aimee Lenhard and Tal Sheleg ran as a pack through much of the race. They finished 83rd, 86th and 89th respectively with times of 27:15, 27:22 and 27:34.

As a team, the girls placed sixth.

The harriers will have another week off before they enter championship season. They will host the Frontier League XC Championships at Colorado Mountain College on Saturday, Oct. 15. The races will begin with the high school girls at 11 a.m. Come out and support your Panther teams.

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