The Lady Centurion Cross Country Team followed up last week’s Regional win, with an outstanding race at the Kentucky State Horse Park, to defend their State Runner-Up Title. The girls team has now placed in the top 3 at State in three of the las tsix years. It was a spectacular way to end the season, as the team had its best race when it counted the most.The pre-season rankings only had the Lady Centurions ranked 8th and spent most of the season outside the top 5.While flying under the rest of the state’s radar, the girls quietly put in the work to be ready for the races that really matter- Regional & State.Even with the convincing win over two of the top teams in the state, North Oldham and Collins, at the Region 3 Championships, still the Centurions got little attention. Most predicted the team to come in 4th. The girls were content to show what they were capable of on the race course.
Lining up in the box right beside 2-time defending State Champion Highlands, the girls were able to keep a close eye on the prohibitive favorite. As the gun went off, all the girls got right in to their own individual race plans. For senior Hannah Herd that meant a conservative opening 2K, before launching her attack at a top finish position. As she has done so many times, she executed flawlessly, as she quickly surged into the top 10.With 800 to go, Hannah pulled up alongside one of the state’s most decorated runners -Paducah Tighlman’s Aleja Grant – and then preceded to put 13 seconds on her to an outstanding 3rd place finish. Hannah’s effort won her recognition from the KHSAA, as she was given the “National Guard KHSAA State Championship Best & Brightest Award”. Hannah’s time of 19:01 broke Jenna Rogers’ school record by an amazing 27 seconds. Sophomore Clara Lynch ran a very strong race on the challenging course to put the Lady Centurions in the hunt for the State Title. Clara’s 13th place finish in a time of 20:05, earned her 2nd straight cross country All-State honor. As they have much of the season, Madalyn O’Dea and Callie Donaldson raced side-by-side for most of the race. Mad-O’s scorching kick gained several valuable places in the last 50 meters as she finished 26th, with Callie following closely in 30th. Junior Kenzie Stovall had her best race of the season, with her 95th place wrapping up the scoring for the Centurions. In the end, Highlands depth enabled them to escape the scare from our team, taking the win with 107 points to Christian Academy’s 140. The strength of Region 3 was seen as North Oldham and Collins swept the remaining podium spots. Freshman Morgan McIntire gained valuable State experience, with her 23:59 run and Maddie Luette wrapped her her high school cross country career with a strong 25:28. The four seniors, Hannah, Callie, Maddie and alternate Rachel Amin, go out as the most decorated class in the program’s stellar history. And on the strength of State veterans Clara, Mad-O, Morgan and Kenzie, plus up-and-comers Faith Brickzen, Lauren Robinson and Kilie Morgan, the Christian Academy dynasty will continue.
Christian Academy Individual State Championships Places & Times
3. Hannah Herd, 19:01 *All-State
13. Clara Lynch, 20:05 *All-State
26. Madalyn O’Dea, 20:49 *All-State Honorable Mention
30. Callie Donaldson, 20:53 *All-State Honorable Mention
95. Kenzie Stovall, 22:46
147. Morgan McIntire, 23:59
181. Maddie Luette, 25:28