09/24/08 — Runners' errors prove costly in ECC 3-A meet

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Runners' errors prove costly in ECC 3-A meet

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on September 24, 2008 11:21 AM


News-Argus Sports Editor

Follow the blue arrows.

But somehow, runners still managed to veer off course during their Class 3-A Eastern Carolina Conference cross country meet Tuesday afternoon at historic Waynesborough Park.

One wrong turn resulted in a disqualification.

Another wrong turn led to frustration and elation.

Wilson Hunt's Pierre Surrette exited the woods with a considerable advantage over Southern Wayne's Kahlil Artis and Eastern Wayne's Russell Turner. However, on the runners' second trip through the woods, Artis exited first.

"When we got to the second leg, he (Surrette) was a good 20 feet ahead of me and the other dude (Turner) behind me," said Artis. "For some reason, he turned right and we turned left. We just kept going.

"I just followed the blue arrows like they said. (Turner) was on my tail the whole way. It was fun."

Artis completed the 3.1-mile course with a first-place time of 18 minutes, 31 seconds. Turner crossed the finish line in 18:33. Half a minute later, Eastern Wayne's Zach Parrish took third.

Hunt's Emmanuel Peres and Mark Massey ended up fourth and fifth, respectively. Beddingfield's Dalton Ford and Quincy Bullock claimed sixth and seventh, respectively.

Charles B. Aycock's Eric DuBose (20:02) and Bobby Cox (20:04) placed eighth and ninth, respectively. Eastern Wayne's Lamont Woodard (20:15) rounded out the top 10 in breezy and sunny conditions.

Surrette appeared at least a minute later among a group of runners. Frustrated, Surrette gestured to his coach and said he got lost on the course.

Eastern Wayne, which has six underclassmen among its top seven runners, compiled a meet-low 39 points in the team competition, followed by Hunt with 59. The Saints settled for third with 83 points. The Bruins and Golden Falcons completed the scoring with 90 and 108 points, respectively.

"I am really proud of the effort (our) men put forth today," said Eastern Wayne head coach Sidney Myers. "They have really trained hard to make this showing. There is strong competition from the six conference teams.

"We expect to be pushed every time we run against any of the teams."

On the girls' side, a small pack of runners were re-directed on the course after a slight mistake. The oversight hardly factored into the individual and team outcomes.

Southern Wayne's Yolanda Rodriguez, a first-year runner, recorded a season-best second-place finish in 23:09.

"Ain't that something?" said Saints coach Kisha Vann. "She has been doing real good this year and is improving each meet. She's is working her way up because she usually finishes third a lot."

Eastern Wayne teammates Leanna Kirkland (23:38) and Kelly Gregorcyk (23:54) took third and fourth, respectively. Aycock's Megan Hales (25:24) and Jessie Kyer (25:39) touched the finish line in fifth and seventh, respectively.

Rounding out the top 10 were Eastern Wayne's Heather Black (25:49) and Sarah Schley (26:09), and the Golden Falcons' Kendra Speight (26:13).

Eastern Wayne emerged the top girls' team with 37 points, while the Golden Falcons collected 46. Hunt and Beddingfield scored 72 and 125 points, respectively. The Saints didn't have enough runners to post a team score.

"I'm extremely pleased with the girls' performance today," said Eastern Wayne coach Jan Metzler.