HOT SPRINGS -- Vengeance belonged to Bentonville High's girls Friday afternoon.
The Lady Tigers, who lost the 6A-West Conference title last week because of a tiebreaker, found sweet redemption when they claimed the Class 6A state championship in a close decision over a sloppy Oaklawn Park course. Bentonville finished with 37 points while Rogers High -- the team that nipped the Lady Tigers in the conference meet -- finished second with 40 points.
At A Glance
ARKANSAS HIGH SCHOOL CROSS COUNTRY CHAMPIONSHIPS
at Oaklawn Park, Hot Springs
Team Scores 1. Bentonville High 37; 2. Rogers High 40; 3. Springdale Har-Ber 102; 4. Fayetteville 104; 5. Springdale High 178.
Individual Results 1. Ali Nachtigal, Rogers, 19:26.4; 2. Lainey Quandt, Bentonville, 19:42.3; 3. Anna Jeffcoat, Rogers, 18:45.9; 4. Grace Litzinger, Fayetteville, 20:02.1; 5. Emily Robinson, Bentonville, 20:08.0; 6. Kaitlyn Heffernan, Bentonville, 20:08.1; 7. Staley Tatum, Mount St. Mary, 20:16.3; 8. Julia Clark, Van Buren, 20:17.4; 9. Jamison Maass, Rogers, 20:21.4; 10. Annabelle Bradley, Bentonville, 20:23.3.
Team Scores 1. Siloam Springs 86; 2. Jonesboro 100; 3. Vilonia 131; 4. Mountain Home 151; 5. Little Rock Christian 159.
Individual results 1. Sara Steimel, Jonesboro, 20:03.5; 2. Presley Roberts, Greenbrier, 20:39.0; 3. Marcie Cudworth, Mountain Home, 20:45.6; 4. Taylor Koeth, Greenwood, 20:52.7; 5. Victoria Ortega, Maumelle, 21:02.1; 6. Macie Cash, Greenwood, 21:03.9; 7. Chloe McGooden, Siloam Springs, 21:09.3; 8. Jescina Droughn, Jonesboro, 21:18.2; 9. Bryn Westby, Vilonia, 21:24.7; 10. Emma Selph, Benton, 21:28.2.
Team Scores 1. Harrison 39; 2. Valley View 93; 3. De Queen 116; 4. Pea Ridge 136; 5. Heber Springs 151.
Individual results 1. Ruthy Ryan, Harrison, 20:57.0; 2. Bekah Bostian, Prairie Grove, 21:05.8; 3. Camryn Casey, Harrison, 21:24.7; 4. Heidy Galvan, De Queen, 21:27.3; 5. Chloe Weathers, Clarksville, 21:40; 6. Aidan Smithee, Harrison, 21:47.7; 7. Reese McMillan, Valley View, 21:49.8; 8. Harmony Reynolds, Pea Ridge, 22:07.9; 9. Olivia Pall, Harrison, 22:10.0; 10. Sophey Pope, Valley View, 22:17.0.
Team Scores 1. West Fork 33, 2. Green Forest 77, 3. Elkins 82, 4. Genoa Central 121; 5. Harding Academy 122.
Individual results 1. Kendall Hays, West Fork, 20:30.1; 2. Karina Maravillas, Green Forest, 21:13.5; 3. Aubrey Campos, Greenland, 21:54.3; 4. Moraylia Huaracha, Elkins, 22:07.3; 5. Joyce Ferguson, West Fork, 22:21.8; 6. Sadie McDonald, 22:34.3; 7. Zoe Erickson, West Fork, 22:37.3; 8. Joanna White, Harding Academy, 22:39.2; 9. Nealie Den Herder, West Fork, 22:49; 10. Lucy Rios, Green Forest, 22:58.1.
Team Scores 1. Melbourne 60; 2. Quitman 84; 3. Salem 150; 4. Conway St. Joseph 186; 5. Greers Ferry West Side 201.
Individual results 1. Haley Gentry, Greers Ferry West Side, 20:57.4; 2. Becca Beard, Maumelle Charter, 21:03.2; 3. Kiley Webb, Melbourne, 21:19.6; 4. Abbey Linville, Rural Special, 21:26.2; 5. Ashleigh Mallett, St. Joseph, 21:37.5; 6. Taylor Hooten, Quitman, 21:55.3; 7. Kieran Kitchens, Haas Hall-Bentonville, 22:13.3; 8. Halle Bennett, Quitman, 22:19.4; 9. Macy McLean, Trinity Christian, 22:23.7; 10. Kate Provence, Melbourne, 22:25.7.
"You never know what happens at a state meet," Bentonville coach Randy Ramaker said. "There's always craziness that happens at this meet. I didn't know it was going to be as muddy as it was, but for me, it's a day everybody needs to run in."
This year's oddity became a slower runner who made a premature turn down the final stretch and was the fourth runner to cross the finish line. The error caused the scoring to appear that Bentonville and Rogers had finished in a tie again -- the same thing that happened at the 6A-West meet.
Once the mistake was found and adjustments were made, it proved to be in Bentonville's favor because four Lady Tigers runners moved up in the standings and provided the margin of victory while Rogers only had three move up. It allowed Bentonville to have four runners among the top 10 finishers.
"I was really happy with our kids sticking it up there," Ramaker said. "It took all five of them to win this, even though Rogers had a runner that probably didn't run her best. Tori Willis fell in the mud, then finished the race, and every one of those kids counted.
"They pushed hard, and they knew what was on the line. We tied at conference, and our girls weren't happy with that. I wasn't happy with that, but those things happen in life. Our girls rose up and didn't accept defeat."
Rogers' Ali Nachtigal successfully defended her state individual title as the sophomore covered the 5,000-meter course was 19 minutes, 26.4 seconds. Bentonville's Lainey Quandt was next at 19:42.3, while Rogers' Anna Jeffcoat -- last week's conference champion -- was third.
The three runners were close until the final half-mile, when Nachtigal picked up the pace and eventually pulled away with a strong finish.
"It's still so awesome to do this and help my team out to the best of my abilities," Nachtigal said. "The sloppy conditions were just part of the race course. There are some races where you just have to go out and run. The Chile Pepper was definitely worse than this."
Siloam Springs earned its fifth consecutive state title despite Chloe McGooden being the only Lady Panther to finish among the top 10 individuals. Siloam Springs scored 86 points, followed by Jonesboro with 102 and Vilonia with 134.
McGooden was the seventh-place finisher with her time of 21:09.3. Sara Steimel of Jonesboro claimed the individual title with her time of 20:03.5, while Greenbrier's Presley Roberts was second at 20:39, 6.6 seconds ahead of Mountain Home's Marcie Cudworth.
Harrison claimed its 10th state title, but the first in 15 years as the Lady Goblins placed four runners in the top 10.
Ruthy Ryan led Harrison as she won the individual title with her time of 20:57, edging out Prairie Grove's Bekah Bostain by 8.8 seconds. Lady Goblin teammate Camryn Casey was third at 21:24.7 while Aidan Smithee and Olivia Pall finished sixth and ninth, respectively.
The Lady Goblins had 39 points while Valley View was a distant second at 93, 23 points ahead of De Queen.
West Fork's Kendall Hays won this classification as a freshman three years ago, and she goes out a state champion. Hays pulled away from the rest of the field and won with a time of 20:30.1, while Greenland's Aubrey Campos was third at 21:54.3.
West Fork also won its first girls state title as Hays was joined by Joyce Ferguson, Zoe Erickson and Nealie Den Herder in among top-10 finishers. The Lady Tigers finished with 33 points, followed by Green Forest with 77 and Elkins with 82.
Kiley Webb led a trio of Melbourne runners with top-11 finishes as the Lady Bearkatz earned their first state title in six years. Melbourne scored 60 points to second-place Quitman's 84, while Salem was a distant third with 150.
Haley Gentry of Greers Ferry West Side earned the individual title by finishing in 20:57.4, almost 6 seconds faster than runnerup Becca Beard of Maumelle Charter. Webb was third at 21:19.6, while teammates Kate Provence and Josie Roark was 10th and 11th, respectively.
Preps Sports on 11/03/2018
Print Headline: PREP CROSS COUNTRY: Bentonville girls find revenge with state title