Jones emerges top individual runner on Waynesborough course
By Andrew Stevens
Published in Sports on September 13, 2013 1:48 PM
Connor Jones knows his opportunities to run on the course he calls "home" are numbered.
The Wayne Christian senior was the class of the field in the boys' portion of a multi-team meet at historic Waynesborough Park on Thursday afternoon.
Jones turned in a time of 17 minutes, 48 seconds on a course he's fallen in love with during his storied career. Despite scorching afternoon heat, Jones bested second-place finisher Daniel Belton of Faith Christian of Rocky Mount by more than a minute. Belton recorded a time of 18:51.
"This is my favorite course," Jones said. "There's lots of shade and one loop. This is my home course so I know the in's and out's. We have two meets left here and being here helps."
Wayne Christian won the team portion of the boys' meet with a score of 48. Wayne Country Day finished second with 52 points. Faith Christian of Rocky Mount (54) was third. Grace Christian (159), Cornerstone (167) and Flora McDonald (169) rounded out the team scoring.
A two-time N.C. Independent Schools Athletic Association 1-A individual state champion, Jones admitted that distractions and other commitments have cut into his training. Jones is not where he would like to be physically at this point in the season.
"I should be a good two minutes faster," Jones said. "I'm out of shape really. The heat is a factor, and fatigue and a lack of fitness. I'm playing soccer this fall and I have to split my priorities. I have to realize I have something to live up to and I have to push to get that.
"The bottom line is I have to run more."
Wayne Christian's Spencer Foster finished third in the boys' race in 20:23. Wayne Country Day's Jason Jones (21:21), Jackson Warren (21:59) and David Huang (22:02) were fourth, sixth and seventh, respectively.
The Eagles' Austin Kornegay (22:27) crossed the finish line in ninth place.
"Some of our team is still young and they are still building up," Wayne Christian head coach Brian Jones said. "Austin Kornegay is in eighth grade and he's really coming along well. Overall, I think we did fine."
Faith Christian of Rocky Mount won the girls' meet with 65 points. Cornerstone tallied a 66 and Grace Christian was third with 69 points. No other girls' team recorded a score.
Community Christian's Morgan Lane was the top female runner with a time of 23:53. Grace Christian's Madison Bolen earned second-place in 24:54. Cornerstone's Hannah Brown (25:05) claimed third.
Margaret Tanner was Wayne Country Day's top female runner with a seventh-place finish in 26:51. The Eagles' Sarah Allen captured ninth place in 28 minutes.
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