Cross country runners prepare all year to be able to qualify for the state meet. Thursday, several local teams and individual runners met that goal through their performance in the sectional meets.
The top four teams in each section qualify for state meet along with the top six runners not on the qualifying rosters of the state qualifying teams. All local teams competed in Section 4 in their respective classifications.
In Class 1A-2A, three local teams qualified for state in the boys and girls sectionals, while several others qualified as individuals.
Athens Bible and Lindsay Lane Christian both qualified for state in the boys sectional, while the ABS girls qualified for state as well.
Lindsay Lane was second in the team competition, while Athens Bible was third. Athens Bible's Jack Bradford won the meet with a time of 17:35.59, while LLCA's Henry Woodall was right behind with a time of 17:42.15.
Athens Bible's Eli Fortenbery was eighth, with a time of 19:20.19, with teammate Wyatt Jones was 12th. Lindsay Lane's Lucas Burt, Adam Rich and Xander Morrow came home 13th, 14th and 15th.
Tanner's Leonardo Rosas qualified for state as an individual. Rosas finished 11th, with a time of 20:02.27.
In the girls 1A-2A race, Athens Bible finished third in the team competition to qualify for the state meet. Trojans runners Jessie Green and Jolie Green finished second and third with times of 22:33.09 and 22:44.51, respectively. Fellow ABS senior Claire Sandlin was 12th, with a time of 23:53.47.
While Lindsay Lane Christian didn't qualify as a team, two Lions runners qualified as individuals. Ruby Callan finished seventh, with a time of 23:29.89, while Sydney Perkins was 11th, with a time of 23:46.56.
Elkmont qualified for the boys Class 3A state meet by placing third in its sectional. Alex Kuntz was the top Red Devils runner, finishing 10th with a time of 18:55.80. Gabe Bailey was 23rd and JonMikel Owens placed 26th.
No teams qualified for the Class 3A girls state meet, although Clements seventh-grader Emma O'Conner qualified as an individual. O'Conner finished 11th in the sectional, with a time of 24:05.98.
West Limestone finished third in the team competition to qualify for the Class 4A girls state meet. Wildcat senior Katie Serrato won the girls race with a time of 20:32.60, while West Limestone seventh-grader Anslee Weatherford placed eighth, with a time of 22:26.76.
There weren't any local teams that qualified for either the girls or boys state meet in Class 5A, although a few runners qualified as individuals.
Ardmore had three runners qualify for the 5A girls state meet, Addison Tiemann, Aynslee Malone and Grace Betterton. Tiemann finished ninth in the sectional race, with a time of 21:26.06, while Malone finished 21st, with a time of 22:51.89 and Betterton was 24th, with a time of 23:02.50.
Ardmore also had three runners qualify in the 5A boys state meet. Carter Richardson finished 10th in the sectional race, with a time of 17:50.55, while Drake Chitam was 22nd, with a time of 18:56.01 and Hayden Hogan was 24th, with a time of 19:01.45.
Athens High qualified for the girls 6A state meet by placing third in the sectional. Caroline Mallette led the Golden Eagles by finishing second, with a time of 19:33.53. Ella Romine was 19th, with a time of 22:00.94, while Abbie Ogles was 20th, with a time of 22:18.04.
Athens just missed qualifying for the boys 6A state meet, as the Golden Eagles finished fifth in the sectional meet. However, three Golden Eagles runners qualified as individuals.
Max Porter was 24th in the sectional race, with a time of 18:00.27, while Asa Savoie was 27th, with a time of 18:19.87 and Jake Collins was 28th, with a time of 18:21.34.
The state meet will take place Saturday, Nov. 14, at Oakville Indians Mounds Park outside of Moulton.