The Rosewood girls cross country team once again enjoyed a successful season on the trails, winning its fourth straight Carolina 1A Conference Championship.
Two of the individuals who helped lead Rosewood to the conference championship title were sophomore’s Abigail Rowe, who finished in second place at the conference championship meet with a time of 23:49, and Dylan Jinks, who finished in third place at the conference championship meet on Oct. 18, with a time of 24:44.
Rosewood head coach Jami Amy said she was impressed by the improvement shown by her runners throughout the season on their way to another conference title.
“I’ve had some strong runners ... they have all just gotten better and better, and I’m looking forward to (continuing to coach) them,” Amy said.
Jinks who finished third place at the conference championships also finished in 19th at the 1A East Regional Championship, which took place on Oct. 29, with a time of 23:34, which meant she just made the 20-runner cutoff for the state championship meet.
The sophomore runner said that when she crossed the finish line the possibly of qualifying for the state meet hadn’t even crossed her mind because she was too busy cheering on her teammates.
“Honestly, I didn’t know if I had (qualified) at that point in time,” Jinks said. “I was too busy taking care of my team and shouting for them for them to finish. One of my closest friends on the team (Abigail Rowe) came in seconds after I came in, so I was taking care of her and cheering on the rest of my team.”
Rowe, who finished one place ahead of Jinks at the conference championship, finished eight spots behind her at the regional championship meet with a time of 24:08, which meant that she did not qualify for the state meet.
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Although Rowe was disappointed she didn’t qualify, she said she was still proud of what she accomplished this season, especially at the conference meet.
“I was a little disappointed about regionals because I felt that I could run better ... but I’m just glad that I have improved so much,” Rowe said. “My freshman year I finished fourth (in the conference), and this year I moved up two spots and I’m just really proud of that.”
Just like the women’s team, the Eagles’ men’s cross-country team also enjoyed a successful season.
As a team, the men finished in second place in the conference just behind North Duplin, and, they also had two of the top three individual runners at the conference championship meet, including the conference champion senior Alex Jones and third place runner junior Anden Timmons.
To win the conference meet as an individual, Jones defeated North Duplin sophomore Benjamin Bullard by only three-tenths of a second, with the two neck-in-neck down the stretch.
The official time for Jones in first place was 20:07:50, with Bullard just missing out on the win with an official time of 20:07:80. Timmons finished in third place with a time 20:38.
Jones had an even better finish at the regional meet, running five kilometers in just 19:35. It wasn’t good enough to qualify for the state meet, though, as he just missed out on the top 20, finishing in 22nd place. Jones said he was disappointed not to qualify for the state meet, but also proud of himself for finishing with his personal best 5k time.
“I tried my best and left everything out there. I don’t really regret anything, which is all you can ask for,” Jones said. “Really, most of the time you are just competing against yourself, so when you can do something like that, it feels good.”